Ten ways HR tech leaders can make the most of artificial intelligence


Adoption of artificial intelligence (AI) is on the increase, but its critics are still fearful that the technology could replace human workers and even do much of the work of HR. Ji-A Min from software company Ideal highlights 10 HR tech leaders who believe AI will support, rather than replace, HR. 

You can’t escape it: everywhere you turn, AI is taking over.

AI is a machine’s ability to mimic human capabilities such as learning, problem solving, and perception. For HR, this is the application of artificial intelligence to the function in order to streamline or automate some part of the workflow.

A recent survey found that 38% of enterprises are already using AI in their workplace with 62% expecting to use it by 2018. According to Bersin by Deloitte, 33% of employees expect their jobs will become augmented by AI in the near future.

To understand the impact of AI on HR, a survey of HR executives by IBM found that 46% believe AI will transform their talent acquisition capability and 49% believe it will transform their payroll and benefits administration.

An ongoing debate is whether AI will replace us in the workplace, however. Here are 10 HR leaders who believe AI technology will support, rather than replace, HR.

1. AI will automate screening and reduce bias

Somen Mondal, CEO of Ideal – software that uses AI to automate recruiting tasks, believes AI’s biggest impact will be in automating candidate screening and reducing bias.

AI can learn the qualifications of employees who are successful in a role and apply this knowledge to screen, rank, and grade candidates who match the criteria.

According to Mondal, companies using AI for recruiting software have seen promising results such as a 71% decrease in cost per hire and a threefold increase in recruiter efficiency.

Mondal is also excited by AI’s potential to reduce unconscious bias during the screening process, since AI can ignore demographic-related information about a candidate’s age, race, and sex.

2. AI will reduce errors and improve compliance

Joey Price, CEO of Jumpstart:HR – a managed HR services provider, thinks AI will help reduce errors and minimize compliance fines.

Because he believes AI is best suited for collecting and compiling data quickly and without human error, Price predicts mid- to senior-level professionals will reap the value of AI the most.

3. AI will augment corporate training

Simon Rakosi, co-founder of Butterfly – a real-time leadership coaching platform, thinks the biggest impact AI will have on HR is augmenting corporate training and coaching.

He views coaching via AI as a way to help managers understand their team’s feedback and put it to use immediately.

While AI can replace the delegation aspect of management, Rakosi believes true leaders can’t be replaced because AI won’t be able to replace soft skills that empower, motivate and develop employees.

4. AI will increase adoption of metrics and analytics

Ira S. Wolfe, President of Success Performance Solutions – a recruitment consultancy, states AI will help HR finally become a strategic partner through the adoption of metrics and analytics.

Using analytics, Wolfe believes AI will help managers identify new hires with the highest probability of success, place them on the right teams paired with the right supervisor, recommend learning opportunities and career path options, and even suggest the likelihood of their flight risk.

5. AI will enhance candidate assessment

Erica Hill, managing editor at HireVue – software that combines digital video with predictive analytics, is excited by AI’s potential to enhance recruiters’ ability to make hiring decisions.

She believes AI can help assess candidates and speed up time to hire without sacrificing quality of hire. For example, AI can turn a 15-minute video interview into a set of 20,000 data points on facial movements, intonation, and word choice to assess a candidate.

6. AI will automate candidate outreach

Aaron Prebluda, CMO at kununu USA – a talent community that features company reviews, believes AI will enable us to be more productive and efficient by automating tasks.

In terms of recruiting and managing talent, Prebluda sees the areas where AI will have the biggest impact as CV screening, interview scheduling, and communication with candidates.

He argues, however, that automating tasks does not reduce the need for people. Instead, AI automation creates more time for people to tackle bigger, more important challenges.

7. AI will streamline employee onboarding

Adelyn Zhou, chief marketing officer of TOPBOTS – an AI research, education and advisory firm, positions AI’s role as replacing many of the mundane tasks in HR and freeing HR’s time to focus on what they do best: nurturing, cultivating, and working with talent.

She predicts intelligent bots will act as virtual assistants in the employee onboarding process, by creating new employee profiles and helping staff answer basic questions about benefits, insurance, and company policies.

8. AI will improve workplace learning

George Elfond, CEO at Rallyware – a workforce engagement platform, states the use of AI in HR is still getting to the point of critical mass of data. He believes the quicker that companies embrace AI technologies, the easier it will be for them to adapt and lead in the future.

According to Elfond, companies who have employed AI-based learning technology have seen impressive results, such as a 32% increase in employee productivity and a 43% increase in employee retention.

9. AI will reveal new insights on talent

Alicia Shankland, Principal at Huntbridge – an executive search and consulting firm, is excited by AI’s potential to challenge long-held HR assumptions with new insights.

Shankland envisions AI will give us insights that can open up entirely new candidate pools by identifying a diverse set of experiences, abilities, and mindsets that are better predictors of success.

10. AI will show the value of the human touch

Steve Pritchard, HR Consultant for Ben Sherman – a UK menswear brand, touts AI as an exciting advancement that promises to make day-to-day life for HR much easier.

He predicts that while artificial intelligence will be beneficial for HR in terms of helping with record keeping and dealing with tasks that can be automated, it will never replace people.

Pritchard believes no amount of technology can replace the simple comfort and reassurance that comes from speaking to another human being who cares.

Ji-A Min

About Ji-A Min

Ji-A Min is the Head Data Scientist at Ideal, recruitment automation software that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to automate time-consuming tasks.
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