The onset of innovative automation tools in the recruitment process should have hiring managers taking a sigh of relief, however, the reality is far from this. Despite the automation of recruitment, the average hiring process has more than doubled - from 30 to 68 days - in the past few years and job-seekers are unhappy with the lengthy process.

A staggering nine in ten candidates (89%) across Singapore, Hong Kong SAR and Malaysia stated they will reject a job offer if the recruitment process takes longer than four weeks. Survey results showed that almost half of the survey respondents (44%) would reject a job offer if the process took between four and eight weeks and a further 45% would reject if the process stretched more than eight weeks.

Of the three markets, job-seekers in Singapore were the least willing to wait out the recruitment process, with 91% stating they would reject a job offer if it took longer than four weeks.

Managing Director for Randstad Singapore, Hong Kong SAR and Malaysia, Michael Smith said, “Automation helps improve efficiency in many ways along the recruitment process for a value-added experience. However, we need to be both flexible and balanced in the way we engage with the candidates to meet their expectations for a more personal experience. When it comes to human resources, personalisation is the key to success.”

It’s a clear message to hiring managers that more engagement efforts are required in the the recruitment process. Automation processes should go hand in hand with the human touch to personalise and improve the efficiency of the hiring process as it is an important decision for job-seekers.”

“I will reject a job offer if the recruitment process takes longer than… (%)”

recruitment process takes longer
recruitment process takes longer

From a job-seeker's perspective, the ideal recruitment process duration should be less than six weeks, with 94% of candidates expecting the process to be within six weeks for optimised efficiency. Majority of the survey respondents (73%) expected the process to take between two and four weeks.

Malaysian job-seekers veered towards a shorter time frame, with 82% looking for the recruitment process to take between two and four weeks. Whereas, job-seekers in Hong Kong SAR were slightly more relaxed with the duration of the recruitment process, with only 67% looking for a two to four week time frame.

“how long should the ideal recruitment process take from first contact to job offer? (%)”

ideal hiring process duration
ideal hiring process duration

The Randstad Candidate Expectation Survey was conducted in September 2017 with 2,000 respondents from Singapore, Hong Kong SAR and Malaysia.

average recruitment process time
average recruitment process time

about randstad

Randstad is a global leader in the HR services industry, with Asia-Pacific operations in Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong SAR, China, Australia and New Zealand. Our offices in Southeast Asia have been supporting people and organisations in realising their true potential, helping find the best permanent and contracting talent in accounting & finance, banking & financial services, construction, property & engineering, corporate & secretarial support, human resources, information technology, legal, life science, sales, marketing & communications and supply chain & procurement.

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