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Leveraging AI in HR: Enhancing Recruitment, Training, and Employee Experience

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By: Sonica Aron, Founder, Marching Sheep

AI and ML have become buzzwords lately. Every conference, every meeting, every discussion seems to be about AI, its adoption, merits and demerits, its impact on ways of working, on jobs, and people. There are several new businesses coming up that are brandishing AI as their USP.

Let us understand this objectively. Any technology has three components – input, processing, output. The same is true for AI as well. Every chatbot, every model out there has been fed in some information and that information has originated from humans. The vast reservoir of data, information, right or wrong, biased, or unbiased, on the world wide web is read by these tools, and basis the ‘prompt’ or the ‘task’ assigned, the tool does its job and gives an output.

With this let us look at where all AI is impacting today. The honest answer is- everywhere. Just about every function, it has the potential to take a look at the tasks that are done and identify the repetitive, data-related, analytics-related tasks, and shift them to a chatbot or software. The same is true for HR as well.

However, before we get all starry-eyed, let us not forget that the technology revolution started with the advent of the first computer and since then technology has been getting upgraded consistently and at a faster pace year after year. Now, why should one associate ‘revolution’ only with information technology, as long as humans have existed, and will continue to exist, they will continue to find ways of making lives simpler.

In all this, it would be prudent to also keep a mindful watch on the impact on the very entity whose lives we want to make simpler- the humans. Let us look at a few examples.

AI and recruitment

For organisations that hire in large numbers month after month, the use of technology surely comes as a boon. Sifting through resumes, scheduling interviews, and blocking calendars, all of these can be automated thereby reducing the dependency on large search teams or RPOs. It drives efficiencies and reduces costs.

Virtual assistants

These AI-powered chatbots can handle routine employee queries related to policies, leave balances, etc. Many online meeting platforms come with virtual assistants that help to capture minutes of meetings enabling HR to focus on strategic aspects of recruitment.

Analytics

AI can analyse historical data to predict future trends like attrition. This allows you to develop proactive recruitment strategies, workforce planning, and retention strategies. AI can also help speed up the analysis of any other data collection like employee surveys, which enables quick solutions.

Onboarding with AI

The first day and the laborious forms which can be completed with the help of a virtual assistant, can make the task quick and easy.

Integration with the learning framework

Today, people want to learn in different ways, and learning journeys can be crafted using virtual buddies, for role plays, quizzes, reminders to take courses, and so on.

Engagement with AI

The anonymity and confidentiality that an AI offers can help organisations gather employee sentiments in their truest form. Unlike earlier, where manual application made it prohibitive for organisations to get the pulse of employees more than once a year, usage of AI make it realtime.

Unlocking transparency in performance

AI can collate data on key metrics, attendance, and goals to identify areas for improvement and provide teamwise and individual dashboards. This data-driven approach can help employees reach their full potential.

The human touch of AI in HR

AI is here to augment and not replace humans. AI excels at handling repetitive tasks and crunching data, freeing up your time to focus on the strategic aspects of HR like building relationships with employees and fostering a positive company culture.

The question of ethical use

When it comes to any tool, software, technology, or process that impacts lives, ethical considerations are paramount. There need to be governance models in place to check on any decisions that are being delegated to virtual assistants or chatbots. For example, periodic checks of performance dashboards or resumes getting rejected or selected.

AI is undeniably powerful, but it is not a magic bullet. Here is why the human touch remains essential in HR:

Understanding company culture: AI can assess knowledge but fails to understand the nuances of your company culture. HR professionals use their understanding of the company culture to identify appropriate solutions.

Empathy and emotional intelligence: AI lacks the human ability to empathise with people and connect with them. HR professionals can provide emotional support, build trust, and foster a positive work environment.

Ethical considerations: AI algorithms can perpetuate bias if not carefully monitored. Hence, HR professionals need to ensure fairness and inclusivity in all aspects of the HR process.

Therefore, AI is your data-driven partner and enabler, providing valuable insights that help you make informed decisions. The human element of empathy, creativity, and problem-solving skills, remains irreplaceable.

Building a successful AI-powered HR strategy

Here are some key considerations for implementing AI in your HR department:

– Identify your needs: Start by identifying the areas where HR can benefit most from AI. It could be recruitment, training, employee engagement, employee retention, etc.

-Choose the right tools: Research different AI-powered HR tools and choose ones that align with your specific needs and budget. Look for demonstrations and trials for understanding proper use cases and ease-of-use level.

-Focus on user experience: Ensure that AI tools are user-friendly for both decision-makers and employees. Training may be necessary to ensure smooth adoption.

-Track and measure results: Monitor the impact of AI on your HR processes. Are you seeing improvements in recruitment efficiency, employee engagement, or other key metrics?

By embracing AI in a thought-through and ethical manner as a valuable partner, HR professionals can create a more efficient, effective, and employee-centric experience.

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