March 5, 2019
In recent years, news headlines such as “Half of Canadian jobs will be impacted by automation in the next 10 years” (Global), or “42% of Canadian jobs at high risk of being affected by automation, new study suggests” (CBC) may have caught your attention and spurred you to question: “Am I going to lose my job to AI?” The answer, in short, is not yet.
Though artificial Intelligence will most likely surpass human capability in hiring and recruitment, total job replacement is at least a few years away. This doesn’t mean that recruiters can afford to wait complacently or continue business-as-usual until the technological sea change strikes. We believe that recruitment is already in the throws of a technological revolution. In order to keep pace with these fast-moving changes, recruiters must actively work to understand the new realities of how AI will impact hiring - the promises, pitfalls, and potential for cooperation and support - before it is too late.
Welcome to Clarity Recruitment’s four-part series on Artificial Intelligence in the hiring process. Over the next few weeks, we will cover all aspects of AI in hiring from current to ideal state. In this installment, we cover where AI stands today in the hiring process.
Currently, AI is mainly utilized primarily on the front end of the hiring process. Originally created for large scale HR operations, the functioning AI processes assist in recruiting and screening. AI companies have developed tools to aggregate hundreds of job boards to provide personalized job alerts, source candidates, screen resumes, and schedule interviews. The common thread? Saving time. In the hiring process, these areas tend to be the most labour intensive and time consuming. As AI takes over these tasks, human jobs have begun to shift, affording hiring managers the opportunity to build psychological and emotional connections with candidates and strengthening the employment brand (Deloitte).
But here is where the wave of AI use slows; where we have gained substantial value in efficiency, there is still much to be improved on in terms of effectiveness (Forbes). Many of today’s basic recruitment algorithms are built to perform a repetitive task and have not benefited from advances in machine learning. Due to their simple nature, these tools require both human training and auditing. This training may cause algorithms to select candidates based on a set of factors that are inadequate compared to those used by actual recruiters (who are not creating simplified metrics for an algorithm). This may cause the screening of a resume to rely on a narrow set of skills or keywords that will often leave out capable candidates that would make a perfect culture fit or have the attitude and aptitude to succeed in a role. Amazon, for example, began work on an AI recruiting tool to further automate the hiring process, but it was found to have bias embedded in its algorithms from those who created it. The tool was found to give preference to male candidates and resumes that pointed to privilege rather than job fit (HR Technologist).
Don’t, however, be fooled by the current state of AI; it is coming for your job… At least as your current job stands. Maybe not tomorrow, but the next decade promises significant changes to the recruitment industry. These changes will create significant challenges for those who fail to keep up, but will provide great opportunities for those who can navigate the changing landscape. If you would like to know how to adapt to the evolving industry environment and position yourself accordingly as AI begins its takeover, follow Clarity’s Head of Behavioural Science, Alex Kaju, as he maps out the future of AI in recruiting and answers all your questions about surviving and thriving in a changing landscape.
Stay tuned for next week’s post on Why the Machine Won’t Win. Subscribe to our newsletter for more posts like this, salary guides, research and insights to keep you at the top of your game.
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