Business Technology

How to maximise your returns from artificial intelligence-powered HR

8 min read

01 August 2018

As a trend, the future of Artificial Intelligence has been debated and talked about in the human resource circles for a while now. A few years back, AI was technology seen only in Hollywood movies. Now it is facing us, and we don't know that much about it in real life.

The issue of artificial intelligence is no longer an unknown. We do not need to hypothesise on its inevitable coming. We know that it will come. We now know that it is going to be revolutionary. We also know about the fears of AI putting millions of people out of work.

We cannot deny the truth of this statement. But, what is it that we can expect from AI on the human resource departments?

There is every reason to be cautious but, we must keep our optimism high. AI can change things for the better. We should expect that AI will be a driving force behind most of the changes in efficiency for a workforce.

To AI or not to AI…that is the question.

Let’s find out

Instead of standing around unsure of what to do, let us find out what we can about what this technological advance can do for the workplace. We are going to look at everything from an HR angle. This way, we will find out what this will do to the workforce and its management.

Personalising employee experience

The onboarding program that employees go through can be subjective and confusing sometimes. That is the reason why it would be nice if the employees could walk into the workplace knowing what they are supposed to do and where they are supposed to go.

When a new employee walks in, a device that gets connected to the AI guides them in a personalised way. The AI system will take away the troubles of the initial stages, for the new people. That way, no other employees have to be repurposed for the job of showing someone around.

Any HR expert worth his salt can recognise this as an advantage.

Decision-making processes

There are so many things that employees need to have done for them. For example, employees need things like, vacations and training, among other things. These are jobs that can be taken over by AI, hence eliminating clashing schedules and errors.

By timing the vacation periods, one can be told by AI, when it is time for them to vacation or train.

These are some of the things that IBM Watson has demonstrated can be done:

  • Vacation Scheduling– Vacations need to be taken at the right time and in shifts that make sense. If there are clashes in the scheduling, it can put you in a tight spot. If AI is taking care of this, there will be no overlaps or mistakes of this kind
  • Mood Monitoring– It is hard for people under pressure to be effective. With AI to monitor their moods, they can combat things like stress and make sure that they do not attend to a task unless they are optimal
  • Training Exercises- When necessary, employees have to undergo training. It may be the introduction of something new, or it may be an orientation for new employees. Whatever it is, AI will recognise weaknesses, and customise training to fill them out
  • Profiling Candidates for Hire- Humans are biased, and they miss things that AI can see. AI can bring diversity and increased efficiency to the workplace using automated gauging of someone’s abilities. The system can run a background check and based on expertise, advice on who to hire.

Whatever you want to use it for in the Human Resource department, AI can help fill in the gaps that have hampered efficiency in so many places.

Automation of low-value tasks

Here is what this means. When you hire an employee, they have to have a desk, electronics, and other assets. These need to be kept track of and the assigning is in itself, tedious. Automating these low-value tasks can change everything for the better.

What you would need is to integrate the employee’s device into the AI system. This system would then guide them through the initial process. These repetitive tasks can be done better when they are automated to save time and money.

Recruitment processes

Hiring can be a very challenging process. As much as this can be taken over by AI, a human element is needed here. AI can, however, make this process more efficient. There is a lot that we cannot see. AI can eliminate this lack of “super vision” by analysing everything.

When there is news that a company is hiring, people drop off a lot of resumes. These resumes can be challenging to go through, especially if there are too many of them. AI eliminates this task from your hands while selecting the most qualified for you to take over.

Prediction for efficiency

Whenever people talk about the future, it is always the uncertainty of it that freaks them out. By studying patterns, AI can, to some extent, predict the future. Through the careful analysis of the past, the present, and the projected trajectory, AI can know when an employee will cease to be effective.

An employee’s effectiveness can be affected by several factors. When caught in time, these factors can be mitigated. AI can help you do that and keep the employees optimal.

AI can not only do this but so much more.

What is next?

Most people would like to know what is ahead of us when it comes to AI and what it can do. One thing is certain. AI is not going to stop, and it will plow through and get here sooner than you think. What you must do, is be prepared for it.

The future of AI is fraught with danger. Elon Musk himself said that we are dealing with something that we do not fully understand. And, he is a Disney-level optimist.

Should we be scared? Should we be happy? It is a little early to tell. It will either be apocalyptic or revolutionary.

This article has been contributed by Sat Sindhar, MD at peoplehr.com.