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The Rise of AI in Human Resources: Implications for HR Professionals

Aug 1, 2023 11:15:43 AM

Human resources is an ever-changing landscape where AI is beginning to play a more significant role each day. As AI technologies advance, HR teams find many opportunities to streamline processes and improve decision-making. However, AI's sudden and rapid integration into our lives has made some HR professionals concerned about its impact on their roles. 

Let’s look at the current state of AI in HR, how it is being used in various HR processes, and whether it will replace human resources jobs entirely or complement existing roles.

Current State of AI in HR

AI tools have proven versatile, enabling HR teams to execute vital functions faster and more efficiently. According to IDC's predictions in its Future of Work 2022 research, by this time this year, 60 percent of global 2000 businesses will already be using AI and machine learning tools to support the entire employee life cycle. IDC’s research also predicts that by 2024, 80 percent of global 2000 organizations will utilize AI/ML-enabled "managers" for hiring, firing, and training employees. 

This growing trend is not without controversies, as exemplified by news of Amazon employing algorithms or bots for employee termination.

Additionally, regulatory measures are being implemented to ensure the ethical use of AI in HR. A noteworthy example is New York City's law, which requires companies to audit their AI-powered recruitment software for biases under the threat of facing fines for violations.

How AI is Currently Used in HR Processes

AI has found applications across various HR functions to assist HR professionals with daily tasks. The hope is for more administrative tasks to be streamlined with the help of AI, leaving more time for HR professionals to focus on strategy, planning, and maintaining a personal touch within their organizations. 

Here are a few ways many people are using AI in their HR processes and the roadblocks they have experienced in these areas: 

Recruitment and Hiring
AI streamlines recruitment by automating candidate sourcing, screening, and matching. This saves time and may enhance the quality of talent acquisition. Although, precautions are necessary to ensure built-in biases don’t affect the recruitment stage. 

Onboarding
With AI-driven personalized onboarding experiences, new employees can quickly adapt to their roles, increasing productivity and job satisfaction. HR professionals will be relieved to have AI take over certain administrative tasks regarding onboarding, but HR professionals should be wary of security risks when using AI for these tasks. This means more security training and a thorough understanding of AI technology. 

Training and Development
AI recommends personalized learning paths based on individual skills and learning preferences, enhancing employee development and upskilling. This means that employees can benefit from training tailored to meet their needs for growth within an organization. 

Employee Management
AI-powered tools facilitate continuous performance tracking, enabling HR professionals to proactively provide timely feedback and address performance issues. AI also aids in performance evaluations and employee engagement initiatives, helping HR professionals identify and address concerns effectively. Although, as seen with Amazon, there are many concerns when it comes to using AI for any process that deals with performance management. 

Will AI Take Your Human Resources Job?

As AI's presence in HR grows, there are concerns about robots taking over and removing the human from human resources. These fears may be overstated as many HR processes that have already implemented AI still require human oversight to ensure there are no security or equity concerns. 

Additionally, the end goal for many is for AI to augment rather than replace human HR professionals. Instead of focusing on administrative tasks, HR professionals can focus on strategic decision-making and nurturing company culture. AI's ability to process vast amounts of data also empowers HR professionals to make data-driven decisions.

Embrace the Future of Work: Preparing for AI in HR

HR professionals can take proactive steps to thrive in an AI-augmented HR landscape. Here are a few things HR professionals can do to make sure they are prepared as AI becomes increasingly prevalent in their lives:

Continuous Learning
Stay up-to-date with AI-related trends and technologies through continuous learning and upskilling initiatives. Be sure to thoroughly study any AI technology that will be implemented by your team so that you can help ensure safety and fairness within your organization. 

Collaboration
Leverage AI as a supportive tool and work collaboratively with AI technologies to maximize their benefits. AI cannot replace the personal touch required to maintain a healthy work culture and happy employees. Looking at the results of use with large companies like Amazon, you can conclude that more automation does not mean more productivity and can often lead to unhappy employees. So, it is essential to remember to use AI as a tool and not a replacement for human interaction. 

Ethical AI Implementation
AI comes with the same biases as the people who create it. HR professionals will have the task of ensuring AI tools are ethically implemented, with a focus on transparency and fairness in all HR processes.

Where Do We Go From Here? 

AI's integration into HR processes is inevitable and may even revolutionize HR functions. While there may be concerns about AI replacing human resources jobs, the immediate future of work will likely see AI as a complement to existing roles, empowering HR professionals to be more strategic and impactful. The key to unlocking the full potential of AI within HR processes will be embracing these tools ethically and proactively. Hopefully, HR professionals will be able to use AI to shape the future of HR and to prepare them for any other new technologies that come our way.

About Proliant

Proliant puts the human in human resources. We provide a fully integrated, cloud-based HCM solution that simplifies payroll and HR processes. The company serves small to large clients in multiple industries in all 50 states and is committed to providing the highest quality customer service in the industry.

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