The Impact of Artificial Intelligence on Recruiting

One of the costliest processes and one of the biggest challenges facing businesses today is that of employee acquisition. Recent estimates regarding the actual cost of finding, recruiting, and hiring the right senior level executive employee have hovered around $250,000. That in itself is a staggering cost, but when you take into account the fact that sometimes the wrong person is hired, the cost can be even more prohibitive.

For that reason, a great deal of attention has been focused on the recruiting and hiring processes, especially for large corporations. One of the more interesting possibilities is artificial intelligence, which of course is somewhat ironic since it involves machines resolving problems strictly related to humans.

With a wealth of information becoming available about candidates for hiring, some of the most innovative artificial intelligence companies have taken up the challenge to improve the processes of recruiting and hiring. Let’s take a look at recent developments.

How AI is changing the game for recruitment

There are a number of ways that artificial intelligence can contribute to the employee acquisition process, especially in carrying out some of the more mundane tasks which are little appreciated. AI will help to ensure that the best candidate is sourced to fill a specific position. AI tools and software will eventually conduct video interviews on platforms using biometric and psychometric analysis so that a candidate’s responses can be thoroughly evaluated.

Employers are likely to begin using applicant tracking systems so that the numerous applications and resumes received online can be categorized and more effectively evaluated for immediate openings with a company. This is especially helpful for a first-level interview, where a great deal of time can be saved by matching the correct candidates with the available job, making contact with those candidates, assessing resumes, and conducting preliminary interviews.

Artificial intelligence is already being used in the hiring process so that hiring managers and recruiters can target more qualified candidates than at any time in the past. AI is allowing these individuals to conduct searches by household income, location, job title, industry, salary, age, education, spending habits, and even more detailed filters than anyone previously thought imaginable.

To a certain extent, it’s possible to weed out candidates who might be unethical, or who could present potential problems to a company if they hired them. This can also be a boon to the hiring process because it disqualifies candidates who might later be found out as less than honest, which would then require the employer to start the hiring process all over again.

On the candidate side, artificial intelligence will significantly change how resumes and candidates are reviewed, and will require candidates to network to a greater degree than in the past. It will no longer be sufficient to provide a cleverly worded cover letter or keyword stuffed resume. Instead, successful candidates will need to demonstrate a history of maintaining professional and relationships that will help them stand out from their peers to get the desired interview.

Candidates will also be required to participate in more advanced video interviews and to respond to questions posed to them via artificial intelligence software that can determine deceipt or other potential problems. This presents a whole new set of challenges to interviewing candidates because they won’t be able to benefit from any kind of visual cues or social cues provided by an interviewer. Instead, they’ll have to be much better prepared to convey required information clearly and intelligently to set themselves apart. In the end, the best possible fit will probably occur much more often for both candidate and employer.

Where AI will be most effective

Because artificial intelligence hinges on problem-solving or learning that a computer is capable of, it seems like the perfect candidate to help streamline those processes involved in recruitment and hiring which can be managed by computers. Those parts of the recruiting workflow which can be streamlined or automated are those which are the most high-volume types of tasks, and those which are repetitive in nature.

By applying the value of machine learning to auto screen candidates and their resumes, a tremendous amount of time and effort will be saved by humans involved in the recruitment and hiring process. It is expected that all the areas of recruiting which require distinct inputs and outputs, for example, screening, sourcing, and evaluations, will in the future become highly automated.

More than 52% of all talent acquisition managers say that screening candidates from a large pool is the single hardest part of the recruitment and hiring process, and this is exactly where AI can be most helpful. Recruiters and talent acquisition leaders are asked every year to increase their hiring efficiency without increasing the size of their recruiting team.

It is estimated that somewhere between 75% and 88% of all resumes received for any given position are actually unqualified for the job. This accounts for a great deal of wasted time and effort on the part of talent acquisition personnel, and almost all of this wasted time could be eliminated with the help of AI software used in the screening process to weed out unqualified applicants.

If AI is used to automate these repetitive, time-consuming tasks such as screening resumes or setting up interviews with candidates, that alone would streamline the recruiting and hiring process. The best AI technology will be software which integrates seamlessly with current recruiting workflows while automating the low-value processes which are necessary but extremely time-consuming.

Having a faster recruiting and hiring process will enable companies to reduce time-to-hire, thereby enabling them to secure available talent faster, before rivals can recruit the same talent.

It has always been something of a black box in recruiting when evaluating the quality of hire, simply because it has been difficult to subjectively measure the productivity of candidates after being hired. Today, it’s much easier to collect and evaluate that kind of data, and more companies understand the value of doing so, and that has allowed the quality of hire to become the most important KPI in recruiting.

The potential for artificial intelligence to improve the quality of hire rests with its capability of standardizing the connection between the requirements of the job and the candidate’s knowledge, experience, and skills. With a much better record of job matching available through AI, employees who are hired tend to be happier, more productive, and less likely to leave the company.

In limited usage, artificial intelligence has already proven favorable results, with companies using AI reporting an improvement in revenue per employee of 4%, and a turnover decrease of 35%. It seems likely that these promising early statistics will improve significantly in the future as artificial intelligence is refined and adapted for optimal usage in the hiring and recruiting workflows.

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