Untangling Hiring with AI Aid
M

y dad works for a small start-up, which focuses on delivering digital solutions to its clients. While the number of projects increases, their requirement for new resources for the job increments as well. Incidentally, he also conducts interviews for potential employees. When I asked him to describe the process, he summed it up in 3 words: Slow, Biased, and Expensive.  


The attributes mentioned above are to be more or less expected when it comes to hiring personnel. In today's world, a worker must be more than able to work 9-5 based on his existing knowledge. Coupled with that, finding someone who is intellectually capable of handling such complicated tasks is a hassle, due to the way schools and universities teach us. On top of this heap of issues, human evolution is not on par with the rate at which our society throws more work at each generation, and HR teams are no exception to this trend. Take IBM for example - with over 8000 resumes arriving every single day; it isn't possible for a group that isn't a small army to go through the ins and outs of 8000 applications every single day!
 But Artificial Intelligence, a phenomenal human innovation, capable of analyzing several notches beyond a human's limit, got me thinking. How could one summon an AI application to help counteract all the issues that cloud the HR teams?


Unbiased screening

Millions of years ago ( a little after the walkman was a thing, for context), humans were a group of hunter-gatherers who relied on each other to keep themselves safe. To best ensure that everyone in the group focuses on the topic at hand ( and not jamming out with their walkman), nature induced a dose of psychological evolution, which caused human brains to feel more comfortable with similar functioning brains. At the same time, this had proved to be a useful buff back in those times. In today's society, especially regarding companies, this evolution is angeling more and more towards a debuff. How? You may ask. According to Forbes, nearly a quarter of all recruitments from various companies are employee referrals. Looking back at what we talked about earlier, the psychological evolution that caused us to outlive the neanderthals(we homo sapiens just had it better) is causing employees to refer people with similar traits to them, whether that similarity is in the form of gender, caste(yeah it's a thing), color, or religion. Thus unknowingly leading to an unconscious bias treatment in the culture of the company. On top of this, according to Forbes, 44% of applicants faced discriminatory issues during interviews, a piece of staggering news. Such kinds of biases in the recruiting stage can cause a straightforward and negative impact on the company's efficiency. Studies show that a company with a diverse workforce proved to be more efficient than a monotone workforce. So how can AI help us in that? Simple, AI is not familiar with the subjectivity of human brains. In other words, the only source of information that AI relies on is cold, hard facts like experience, education, and the data it collects during an interview process mean that it is simply unable to make irrational, biased decisions due to a lack of data—serving blindfolded justice-without any bribery. Applications like Textio and Unbiasify are Generation One products of this application of AI, which is only going to get better over time.


Speeding the process

On any day, humans are humans. While we have a supercomputer the size of 2 balled up fists, its downfalls become apparent with it being subject to a tremendous workload. And immense workload thy has. HR teams are one of the busiest people in the market. Searching for perfect individuals to get the job done, adjust to the company's culture, and stay long enough that their services outweigh the cost of bringing them on board in the first place seems like finding a needle in a haystack. With the odds stacked against them and very little time, HR teams face the age-old issue: Quality -read each resume thoroughly- or Quantity -skim through applicant papers and be hasty. And in most cases, all of them make the same decision-haste. It results in many gems never seeing the light of day. According to harver.com, around 65% of valuable profiles get overlooked during the screening process. Remember, this is just a preliminary screening, the chore of having to go through the tiresome interview process and rely on gut feeling to choose who makes the cut, is a problem in its ballpark. So how would one speed up this process? Well, going back to the analogy: use a magnet. For our purposes, that magnet is AI. The computational and statistical power of AI means that it can screen through millions of data points for each applicant in no time. Specific solutions can analyze over 300 MILLION social profiles, which is too with startling accuracy, something a small army of humans would require ages to accomplish. This degree of precision and accuracy will help the HR teams focus on a more condensed roster of applicants, resulting in better recruits.


What does this mean?

Throughout the read, you may have come across us, saying AI has better 'specs' than human HR teams in nearly every way. So it could be inferred that AI may replace humans in this field. But that isn't the case. Yet another analogy best explains this. This year, the iPhone SE came out, and all things considered, it's just an average phone on paper. Despite this, many reviewers are claiming that it'll be the phone of the year. Many phones offer much more features for that price; one has four cameras, one has a 120hz display with quad HD OLED 10bit screens with colors you can't even see, and another has a battery pack welded inside it. All of these things do something better than the SE, but most of them favor SE over other phones. WHY? It's because the SE nails the basics. Human HR teams are the SE. Regardless of how out of this world features AI tools, they are just what they are; tools. Enabling AI in HR will undoubtedly benefit the team and help focus on the priorities rather than the mundane tasks; however, it cannot replace them. The HR industry will always require a human touch, and my dad will continue to call people at 11 in the morning and ask if it's the right time to interview them.

references
  1. How Integrating AI Into Recruitment Can Benefit Companies Facing a Labor Crisis. Url
  2. Talent Retention using Artificial Intelligence. Url
  3. How AI is Uprooting Recruiting. Url
  4. 9 Intriguing Uses of AI in Recruitment in 2019. Url