Recruitment 2.0: How AI, Machine Learning & HR Tech Is Changing The Future Of Recruitment

Himanshu Aggarwal, Co-Founder & CEO, Aspiring MindsAn alumnus of IIT Delhi, Himanshu created one of the India's leading personal finance portal and currently leads overall business strategy and management at Aspiring Minds

Hiring has long transcended from just finding people to finding the right people. The exponential and highly disruptive changes in technology have caused HR departments across the globe to revolutionize how they hire. Artificial intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) are clearly the front runners in the list of disruptive HR technologies. What was once thought as a threat is now an opportunity for recruitment leaders and entrepreneurs.

A report by CB Insights, one of the largest global research firms, states that global investments in HR technology stood at $2 billion in 2017 (up from $400 million back in 2012). India's multi-billion dollar HR industry is not far behind either and is increasingly adopting HR technologies in recruiting, on-boarding and managing talent.

Enterprises are highly optimistic about the possibilities of technology changing the way recruitment is happening and its ability to improve organizational efficiency & effectiveness. Data analytics and ML algorithms, more than ever, are being used to create sharper people insights and offer decision-making sup-port. Users of data science and AI will agree that these tools are capable of increasing recruiter efficiency by as much as 70 percent and dramatically reducing cost-per-hire. Data science and predictive analytics bring objectivity to hiring processes making them more democratic in nature. They are also useful in collecting and compiling prospective candidate and current employee data quickly and without human error.

Data science led technological advancements have remarkably revolutionized the talent assessment space. Scientific assessments are more reliable and accurately
measure candidates' competency and skills. They further help you sieve misfits from getting hired (Type-1 error) and prevent the right people from getting rejected (Type-2 error). This significantly reduces the cost of a bad hire, which is way more than just monetary for organizations! Scalability is another advantage that these assessments bring to the hiring process. They allow you to access and evaluate a large pool of applicants, anytime anywhere, in a secure, proctored manner!

AI and machines have made their way into almost every area of recruitment evaluation today; be it language assessment or programming skills assessment or advanced simulated tests to mimic a real job environment like a call/chat process, a sales scenario and so on. The latest addition to the list is automated video interviews and they have clearly taken the HR fraternity by storm! Using advanced AI and natural language processing (NLP), they can accurately rate a candidate's body language, facial expressions and voice tonality. Just by analyzing his/her eye movements and voice modulations, AI can determine if the candidate is:

Data analytics and ML algorithms, more than ever, are being used to create sharper people insights and offer decision-making support

• Lying about a previous job role or academic qualifications

• Adept in dealing with crucial workplace situations (the `right' organizational fit)

• Capable of managing client expectations (extremely crucial in sales and customer service roles)

That's not all! AI-powered assistants, aka chatbots, are the perfect solution to managing candidate relationships and sometimes even conducting an initial screening. Using natural language processing and preset scripts, these bots can handle candidate queries, schedule interviews and even auto generate candidate feedback, as well (some-times better) as a human can! They make sure candidates get regular updates about the status of their job applications, keeping them engaged all throughout the recruitment cycle.

AI and data science-led advances have brought efficiency to recruitment by reducing time-to-fill and effort spent in redundant processes. It not only benefits HRs in recruitment but also leaves them with more time to work on talent planning and partner with business in creating a truly exceptional employee experience.

While machines are significantly making their presence felt in the Human Resources spectrum, it is not possible to take the `human' entirely out of human resources. AI and automation can enhance processes and free-up recruiters but hiring is ultimately about people and interaction. HR practitioners must continue to find ways to innovate so as to keep-up with business' blitzkrieg pace of change. One way is to embrace disruptive HR technologies with open arms.