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14 August 2020

5 Ways AI is Disrupting Human Resources Management

Artificial intelligence is a disruptive technology. It has transformed many business function including human resources management. The technology continues to change the way human resources management teams operate across the industry. If you’re a CHRO, here are a few trends involving AI, you should keep a check on.

Artificial intelligence in recruitment

Recruitment is a continuous and repetitive task. And one task AI is extremely good at is—automating repetitive tasks. Recruitment is a long process with several repetitive tasks, which can be easily automated using artificial intelligence. For this reason, AI in recruitment has been discussed again and again.

HR professionals spend a significant amount of time in posting jobs on various job portals, shortlisting resumes, and conducting telephonic interviews to ideal candidates. A major portion of these tasks is now automated by ATS (Applicant tracking systems). These applications can read through resumes seamlessly and shortlist candidates based on criterion. Social media, which has now added a new channel for recruiters to source candidates,

According to a survey conducted by Ideal, for 52 % of talent acquisition leaders, finding the right candidate for a role is still the hardest challenge. This is disconcerting when it turns out that 56% of organizations are expecting their recruitment volume to increase, while organizations keep their recruitment same in size. This means organizations are expecting HR professionals to do more with less.

AI in recruitment will play a significant role in the coming years.

Artificial intelligence empowers employee retention strategy

Just AI can recognize better fitting candidates by screening resumes, it can also help organizations retain their employees.

Companies have employee data collected at one place. By recognizing patterns in this data, employers can tell whether an employee dissatisfied or planning to leave. It can further identify the employee’s reason for dissatisfaction and under lying causes.

After the analysis, when an employer knows the reason behind the dissatisfaction of employee, career aspirations, etc. they can take appropriate decisions to engage the employee back.

Career progression and growth opportunities are major reasons for why employees stay at work. Stagnation in work makes life monotonous, which is an early sign of people planning to quit their job. Using an AI-based prediction tool, it can detect when a person is planning to quit by looking at performances. These workers aren’t happy about their job, instead want challenging tasks to accomplish.

AI-based tool can help employers to come up with learn & development programs and areas for mental growth.

Artificial intelligence will remove task-based approach work

When artificial intelligence automates most repetitive tasks, professionals will be left with the few tasks, where human discretion is necessary. Ultimately, AI will increase efficiency for various business operations. Organizations that follow a task based approach to work will need to re-evaluate their measure of employee performance, as completing a certain number of tasks will no longer be an effective way to do so.

Then CHROs will need to shift their focus from measuring performance by the number of tasks completed to the value delivered by employees.

This again would require CHROs to address the challenge of remuneration. Organizations will need to compensate employees on the value of their work.

Automation reduces the cost of tasks because it can be easily done by artificial intelligence. For other tasks, the value workers will add will increase automatically. These tasks are cognitively demanding and AI might not be as good as people are at it.

Artificial intelligence will demand workers to upskill

AI is often touted as a harbinger of job disruption. There has been a prevailing belief in the global workforce that white collar jobs will be completely eliminated, as white collar jobs are mostly rote tasks.

Similarly, AI will be a significant factor in the jobs of managers, supervisors, analysts, and more. As AI is enabling software and mobile apps to do tasks that earlier required managers and analysts.

Then, on the manufacturing floor, AI-powered machines are doing what earlier was made possible with the assistance of human workers. These workers will need to do additional work which would require them to learn from ground up.

This will then require organizations to re-train their workers from the lowest level to the uppermost workers. CHROs need to think of ways to devise and implement training programs at this scale.

Training programs will primarily focus to impart -

1. Transferrable skills
2. Adaptability
3. Critical thinking
4. Compassion
5. Self-awareness

So far learning and development programs have focused on knowledge transfer. Preparing workers for artificial intelligence marks a complete shift in education, from knowledge transfer to self-awareness and self-discovery, this will be monumental shift company leaders will witness.

AI-dominated workforce will need human touch

In the above point, we have stressed on the increasing emphasis om human values in an AI-powered work environment. These values will become the focus of work in an AI-powered economy.

This means CHROs and HR leaders will need to lead their teams toward self –awareness and self-discovery. Similarly, it will fall upon executives to ensure that use of technology doesn’t obscure or impede the humanity of their workers.

As technology embeds deeper in work, its design and use will need to be assessed for fairness and equity. This would require leaders’ discretion to answer questions such as whether the use of technology will decrease or increase discriminatory bias, does it protect the privacy of worker data, are decisions made by the technology transparent and explainable, and are there policies to hold humans responsible for the decisions’ output.

Further, company leaders will need to think about the environment in which technologies make decisions. Algorithmic and human decision makers are part of the environment. The tools must be designed to empower them both.

The end user of an algorithm should know how to use the tool effectively. Guide lines and business rules should be established to covert predictions into prescriptions. Further, the end user should know how to override the algorithm or complement its recommendation and other information.

This is the part where your interest will overlap with your company’s CTO or anyone who is responsible for the technology. You will have to advocate for human-centered decision-making environments so that the compassion, the empathy, the curiosity, and the self-awareness of your workforce can work in tandem with your AI tools.

The role of the CHRO, then, will become increasingly important as artificial intelligence evolves. As rote tasks fall under the purview of the algorithm, your team’s essential human traits and their ability to make informed decisions will be what actually drive business value.

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