In 2016, artificial intelligence was a major topic of discussion. Does that mean it's time to move onto another hot trend in 2017? Not quite. AI has barely hit its stride when it comes to the benefits it can bring to recruiting and talent acquisition.
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Here are three ways AI can help you if you make it a part of your recruitment strategy:
1. Turning Quantity Into Quality
On average, every corporate job opening attracts 250 resumes, but only 4-6 of these applicants will receive an interview and only one will be extended an offer. If a recruiter's goal is to make 8-12 hires a month, this means they would have to review about 2,000 resumes per month at least.
On average, a recruiter spends about six seconds reviewing a resume. Some may argue this is not nearly enough time to make an informed decision about each candidate, but how else are recruiters supposed to sort through all these applications and make a hire in a timely manner?
AI can help. By using AI to initially assess resumes and rank candidates according to their potential fit, recruiters can turn piles of resumes into short lists of qualified candidates fast. Recruiters can then spend more time on the resumes that actually warrant attention. In this way, AI can save time for recruiters and allow them to make better hires.
2. Improving the Candidate Experience
Many job seekers have run into the dreaded ATS black hole. You send your application in and wait to hear back – but you never do. You wonder day in and day out whether the company received your information at all – or even cared.
According to CareerBuilder, 82 percent of employers think a negative candidate experience affects the company little if at all. In reality, 58 percent of candidates who don't hear back from an employer are less likely to buy products from that company.
It's also important to remember that people talk: 33 percent of candidates who have experienced a poor candidate experience will talk about it on social media. This could deal a major blow to an organization's reputation.
With each corporate recruiter dealing fielding about 2,000 resumes a month, how can recruiters ensure that each candidate has a positive experience?
This is where chatbots come to the rescue. Chatbots can stay in contact with candidates when recruiters can't, keeping them informed on where they are in the process and sending notifications once a position has been filled. Implementing a chatbot in the recruiting process gives candidates the communication they need and helps recruiters save time. More advanced chatbots also can collect data from conversations with candidates and use it to determine which candidate is most qualified for the position.
Chatbots can also ensure positive candidate experiences by guiding candidates through the application process. Given that 93 percent of job seekers name "unclear application instructions" as a primary cause of bad candidate experiences, this is an especially effective use for chatbots.
3. Reducing Bias
Recruiting firm Hays Recruiting carried out an experiment in which it asked more than 1000 hiring managers about a candidate's attributes and suitability. Half the hiring managers received a copy of a resume with the name "Simon" at the top while the other half received one with the name "Susan." The resumes were otherwise identical. In large companies (more than 500 employees), 62 percent of hiring managers said it was extremely probable they would interview "Simon," but only 56 percent said the same about "Susan."
Bias unfortunately exists in recruiting, but AI can help reduce it. When AI screens resumes, it ranks and scores candidates on the basis of qualifications, leaving bias out of the equation.
The talk of improvement is never enough – it's time to act! Adding AI to your recruitment process is by far the best thing you can do to for your company for 2017.
A version of this article originally appeared on Undercover Recruiter.
Noel Webb is cofounder and CEO of Karen.ai, a "cognitive recruiting assistant."