by Matthew Ferdenzi
Future , Automation , AI , Artificial Intelligence , Recruitement , Trends , Industry , News , Clients , Technology , LifeAtUR

Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning are set to be game changers for the recruitment industry and are already changing the jobs of recruiters.

The recruitment industry has come a long way from reviewing printed CVs spread out across the floor in the 80s, to today’s modern era of digital databases and AI powered search, enabling recruiters to go through thousands of CVs in seconds. 

AI is here to stay and has already become a big part of recruiter’s day to day with the likes of LinkedIn Recruiter, that uses algorithms to sift through its database of 7m candidates looking for jobs. Early adopters of this new technology are sure to gain an advantage over competition in a crowded market.

A new world of work

With this rapidly evolving technology it’s hard to predict exactly where things are heading but according to Forbes, the use of artificial intelligence will play a key part in reducing human racial and gender-based biases.

Using machine learning algorithms also makes it possible to screen CVs and applications for keywords and skills that indicate a candidate’s suitability for a role. It’s worth mentioning here that most successful hires are made based on behaviors and softer skills, which AI is not great at identifying yet. This is down to humans not knowing which behaviors to tell AI to look for in candidates but also because AI still lacks human interpersonal skills.

According to LinkedIn, there are several ways AI will change the way we recruit:

  1. Programmatic advertising will make job ads more targeted and effective.

  2. Profile augmentation will allow jobs to be recommended based on the job a person wants to do, not just what they do now. This would make finding profiles for new tech jobs, that are hard to fill, such as Blockchain Developers easier as it matches experience with interests and recognizes a candidates’ potential.

  3. Chatbots are already being used by some recruiters, answering candidates’ questions 24/7 and can also fill in the gaps in candidates’ CVs, giving recruiters a clearer picture of their suitability for the role.

  4. AI can be used to analyze candidate’s speech patterns to find out more about them but can also check language competency. Advanced competency tests will allow candidates to demonstrate their emotional and cognitive abilities through fun games – a great way to test soft skills that can be difficult to detect.

  5. Video interviews are also set to become automated. A candidate may only have to speak to the camera while the machine takes them through a list of questions. This may help eliminate unconscious bias and saves recruiters’ time. Facial and speech recognition software may can also be used to analyze the candidate’s body language, their tone of voice and their stress levels during the interview.

  6. Finally, automated appointment setting will help recruiters quickly and easily schedule meetings with candidates.

What’s the mood of the industry?

According to Tratica Research, revenue generated from the direct and indirect application of AI software is estimated to grow to $36.8 billion by 2025.

Bullhorn’s 2018 UK Recruitment Trends Report shows that 29% of recruitment firms consider improving core business efficiency to be one of their top three challenges for the year ahead but only 16% said introducing automation is one of their top three priorities. 30% of respondents believe that AI will create more jobs while 41% think it will lead to job losses.

A recent survey by Jobvite was slightly more optimistic with 49% of recruiters feeling positive about the effects of AI automation on their jobs with only 7% believing AI will have a negative effect. 72% of recruiters believe their approach to hiring will need to evolve as AI and automation become more prevalent.

Matthew Ferdenzi, Chief Operating Officer at Understanding Recruitment USA commented: “We’re already seeing the huge potential AI has to disrupt industries across the board. There has been a sharp increase in demand for specialist talent which we predict to continue over the coming years. We already have a specialist AI & Machine Learning team of four people based in the UK and towards the end of the year we’ll be expanding into the American market, opening an office in Boston, that will specialize exclusively in AI and machine learning roles.

Will AI replace recruiters?

AI will impact what the job of a recruiter looks like, but instead of a threat, it should be seen as a tool that will make the recruitment process more sophisticated.

A modern recruiter needs to be knowledgeable, highly networked and understand the industry. The use of AI will free up their time to put the human element back into the heart of the hiring process.

Time saved by automating the mundane and time-consuming tasks including scheduling interviews and sending routine emails, can be spent competing for candidates and focusing on making decisions about which candidate is best for the job.

Of course, AI could lead to the loss of admin-heavy jobs, but new roles will also be created. overall, the benefits of automation and other tools outweigh the risk and help recruiters do a better job and be more productive.

How AI can help recruiters

In this competitive industry, recruitment firms need to constantly evolve their services to stay relevant. The crucial role of recruiters needs to be to bring people together. AI will free up time for recruiters to meet with more candidates in person and to be more creative in the hiring process.

While AI will enable senior recruiters to spend more time on business development and winning new business, more junior recruiters will be able to spend time dealing with candidates and clients from the start which will have a positive impact.