7 Recruiting and Hiring Experts Weigh in on Artificial Intelligence in Recruiting:


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Today's Question: Do you think artificial intelligence (AI) will change recruiting and hiring? How so? Or, do you think the effects of AI are overstated? Why?

1. AI Will Change the Way We Assess – and Develop – Soft Skills

Artificial intelligence will help organizations place employees within roles and teams that make the most sense based on their specific skill sets, both hard and soft.

While it's relatively easy to detect hard skills via someone's resume or work background, it's more difficult to assess soft skills and one's propensity to succeed as a manager. Tools designed to score and ultimately coach these types of soft skills will be critical when it comes to placing employees in roles within an organization, and even externally. It's not far-fetched to envision a future in which this data is transported as employees move from job to job, serving as an ever-evolving profile designed to match employees with the best opportunities, and vice versa.

— David Mendlewicz, Butterfly

2. AI: A Corporate Lie Detector

I think the one thing that people might not have thought about is how AI will be used as a lie detector.

There are many tells when a person is lying, from where they look to the stress levels in their voice. By combining a camera that observes eye movement with voice-stress analysis, HR managers will be able to use nothing more complicated than a webcam and their computer microphone to analyze an interview and see flags of potential deceit or, at minimum, concern.

The foundational technologies are all there. It's only a matter of time before the tools of the FBI and CIA become cheap enough to sit in a boardroom.

— Sean MacPhedran, SMITH

3. AI Can Do Great Things – But We Should Be Careful About How We Use the Term

I don't think the effects of AI are overstated, but I do think "AI" is being thrown around a little too loosely in the recruitment software industry. Anybody with a simple machine-learning algorithm is claiming to offer AI as part of their recruitment solution. I think that, at least in the beginning, software companies with more marketers than engineers will give it a bad rap. So, for the relatively "weak" AI offerings, the effects will be overstated. Since "AI" is being used so loosely, it's more critical than ever that the talent acquisition function tracks relevant recruiting data.

— Jon-Mark Sabel, HireVue

4. What's Time-Intensive for Recruiters Is Child's Play for AI

Right now, AI still has its flaws, but its real strength is pattern recognition. Its role in recruiting in today's world is first to analyze resumes and social media profiles.

Let's take a simple example: AI could easily sort through thousands of resumes and LinkedIn profiles, scanning for grammatical errors. It could eliminate thousands of candidates simply based on the frequency of grammar and spelling errors in a matter of seconds. Then, it could analyze keyword frequencies used to see what knowledge base and interests candidates have. This is an extremely time-intensive activity for humans, but child's play for AI, which means that companies could quickly create their short lists in a non-scary, robots-aren't-taking-over kind of way.

— Carrie Wood, Lease Ref

5. Goodbye, Black Hole

Because the economy has been growing and unemployment has been shrinking, companies are feeling the squeeze when it comes to finding talent. Companies with high-volume openings (like sales or customer service) are especially challenged with both building talent pools and qualifying candidates in a timely fashion. For these types of roles, candidates simply aren't waiting around for opportunities; companies have to engage quickly or risk losing the candidate.

AI could potentially eliminate the candidate black hole, A.K.A, the corporate ATS. Companies with high-volume needs can see a huge benefit in AI tools that auto-match candidates to current requisitions, eliminating time-consuming searching and reviewing. This allows relevant candidates to get to the front of the line and creates a better candidate experience.

— Sabrina N. Balmick, ACA Talent

6. Recruiting Is in a Sorry State Today – But Maybe AI Will Change That

I very much hope AI will change recruiting and hiring because it is in a sorry state at the moment.

With ATS, avatars doing videos, and pre-interview testing that takes the candidate hours to do, companies have taken what should be an engaging relationship-based process and turned it into a transaction – all based on fake precision. Does any recruiter or manager really believe that the five people with the most keywords in their resumes are the most qualified candidates? Or are they just the best resume writers?

Since companies aren't about to abandon these tools, I believe AI will at least be able to read the context of a resume rather than just keywords. Moreover, AI will allow the accessing of Facebook, LinkedIn, school databases, companies, associations, etc., in the future to complete a picture of someone's career trajectory, interests, and strengths. Then, the recruiter can reach out to the individual and engage them person to person!

— Dave Denaro, Keystone Partners

7. Don't Let the Hype Distract You

The hype that comes with the incremental developments in AI technology often seems to supersede the immediate impact. There's no denying machine learning and automation tools will have significant impacts on recruiting, especially in terms of early-stage tasks, as the ability to move quickly and maintain up-to-date, detailed information is imperative in today's staffing market. While there's a lot of buzz around how AI tools will provide more flexibility in the research phase of the recruiting process, ultimately, it continues to be up to the actual recruiter to understand and navigate the challenges of placing the right candidate in the right position.

— Hilary Craft, Addison Group