This has to be one of the great modern-day corporate lies and I suspect most companies spend more money and invest more time in installing a suite of office printers than they do in hiring for a specialist vacancy.
So why the big disconnect with what companies say and what they actually do?
I think what sits at the root of this is that most people hate the process of finding, assessing and rejecting people. Doing it properly just isn't a lot of fun, for the most part.
So people cut corners, which is quite a normal reaction when faced with doing something they don't like.
Technology has made it easier for HR and hiring managers hide behind automation (whilst perversely using the same automation to attract larger number of job applications) and for agencies to sell the lie that the best talent in the marketplace are people doing exactly the same job for a similar company.
So, whilst they're generating more candidates from channels that are cheap to use, they also trying to reduce the amount of human interaction during the process and limit the types of candidates that are qualified to apply.
If a company really did believe the mantra that 'people are their greatest asset', the department with the biggest operating budget would surely be HR and/or Recruitment. But it isn't. For many it's probably the smallest.
In many ways, as a supplier, recruitment should be one of the easiest services to sell because it causes so many companies so much discomfort.
So maybe part of the problem is that too many HR people and hiring managers are looking for an 'easy button' and agencies, flat-fee recruiters and software companies are too prepared to sell them one.
Filling jobs is stressful and often thankless work. Maybe if we all admitted this, then maybe we could all start concentrating on tackling the work with a little more integrity?
God only knows where 'Big Data' is going to take this next.