We finally reached that state where Artificial Intelligence or AI, in short, is mainstream. By Erika Rykun.
AI has come down from the TV screens and fantastic stories and is now an integral part of our lives, helping us shape the world and the future.
In fact, the regular consumer has little idea of just how much they come in contact with smart algorithms in their everyday lives! Let’s take a look at modern vehicles with an advanced autopilot system – they use AI to understand the environment around.
But AI hits closer to home when it’s being used in smartphones, tablets, wearable technology (smartwatches, fitness bracelets, and others) to learn our behaviors and offer predictions. The virtual assistants we use (Siri, Cortana, or Alexa) are designed to learn how to speak more naturally and how to offer information that’s actually useful.
In addition, businesses use automation to improve their efficiency in dealing with customers, re-assign tedious tasks, and keep everything running smoothly. AI helped CEOs organize and understand the staggering amount of data a business needs to function in today’s market. And, as the algorithms got smarter, we now follow Business Intelligence predictions thus eliminating most of the guesswork that goes into planning for the future.
Artificial Intelligence Trends in Human Resources Management for 2020
There is no doubt that AI is good for business in general, but automation is slowly spreading towards other niches like healthcare, industry, production and manufacturing, and HR. In fact, it goes even further, spreading to such niches as wildlife.
Since HR is a very people-oriented field, it can be difficult to understand how this combination works. Still, we learned that AI has real-world applications in the HR niche, that bring a wide range of benefits for hiring managers and anyone involved in the process of screening, matching, and reviewing candidates.
As such, in this article, we try to draw a schematic of how Artificial Intelligence and Human Resources Management can coexist and improve each other as technology grows.
AI & Complex Administrative Functions
HR is a challenging field plagued by complex administrative functions that consume a lot of time and energy. Furthermore, this level of complexity creates the perfect environment for human error while the tediousness of some tasks invites for missed deadlines and a lowering in productivity and motivation.
Now, AI technologies can take care of the processes that require a lot of time and energy from the human mind (such as screening candidates for a certain position or finding the best members for a new team). Even more, it does these tasks (that used to take dozens if not hundreds of hours) almost instantly without making any mistakes.
In companies that use such technologies, automation managed to eliminate most of the manual analysis that had to be performed by HR people. As a result, the recommendations are made based on accurate data and not gut feelings, which increased the accuracy and efficiency of HR-related decisions.
But there’s a catch. As stated in the paper written by Jim Euchner – Little AI, Big AI, while the new technology in the field of automation has a wide range of benefits for businesses and organizations everywhere. However, no AI solution has the capacity to provide helpful recommendations and courses of action if it is not implemented correctly.
For instance, AI has a huge potential in reducing costs with various tasks, but it cannot (and should not) replace the human component. Current algorithms only provide accurate recommendations for managers so they can make better decisions regarding further actions. However, the manager has the freedom to choose if they will take the direction indicated by the algorithm or not.
AI Used to Support Motivation
According to Predictive Analytics and AI in People Management paper published by the Incentive Research Foundation (IRF), automation can be the missing link in finding the answer to low motivation of employees.
Uninspired management practices, unresponsive HR departments, a lack of flexibility towards the workplace, and unfriendly technology are some of the few factors that stifle productivity and reduce talent retention.
But, with the use of AI, companies have a better shot at understanding what goes wrong in their systems. We are now at an ideal congruency between processing power and data analysis algorithms. Through their daily activities (sending emails, working on documents, research, and so on), each employee generates a constant stream of data. Using AI, companies can record and analyze this stream to learn more about their employees’ preferences, needs, and motivational factors.
Moreover, we don’t need expensive tools to implement these smart algorithms as regular computers have enough processing power. As such, even small companies have the right tools at their disposal at a fairly affordable cost.
By using predictive analytics generated by AI, manages can explore new means to attract and hire better talent, discover hidden talent that’s already in their organization, and even conduct real-time performance evaluations and award the right type of incentives and rewards.
HR Functions that Benefit the Most from AI Implementation
By now, there’s no doubt that AI has had a positive influence over the entire HR niche, but some functions have a bit more to gain than others. Some of the current examples of the AI usage in HRM include candidate screening, candidate matching, resume update, and chatbots.
For instance, HR representatives are no longer responsible with making sure employee information is up to date. Using AI, employees can access, view, and edit their own personal information including requesting vacation days and other requests. This way, the company reduces the time HR spends on updating and checking information and allow employees to be forward with their demands.
Another function that benefits tremendously from using automation is team training. This task requires a lot of energy and research from the HR department since they need to be aware of everyone’s skills and motivation to learn new ones. But, by using smart algorithms, managers will receive an accurate assessment of the skills each employee has. They’ll also receive recommendations to which training opportunities to implement and how.
Of course, new technologies can be used to automate repetitive low-value tasks such as screening candidates or doing the same onboarding process every time there’s a new employee. This way, HR managers have the possibility to focus on more demanding tasks that require ingenuity and creativity.
Lastly, AI is perfect for improving the hiring process as it can provide recommendations and useful tips regarding the best candidate profile. Smart algorithms can also screen candidates based on specific features you want in a candidate. This way, the hiring manager will only have to interview people with the right skills for the job.
The HR niche has a wide range of challenges that are difficult to tackle with the current AI algorithms. Still, the current AI-based HR applications are incredibly useful in reducing time wasted on routine, boring tasks and eliminating the human error factor or biased decisions.
Even more, these solutions are effective in raising employee productivity and help companies retain talent and increase loyalty. So, while there are areas that can’t use automation, the current algorithms prove to be quite useful for both large and small companies. Author bio:
Erika Rykun is an independent copywriter and content manager. She is an avid reader who appreciates unread books more than read ones.
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