How AI Can Help With the Hiring Process
According to a 2021 ManpowerGroup survey, 69% of employers across the globe report that filling job openings has become a challenge. And this makes sense—especially when you consider how time-consuming and cumbersome the applicant screening process can be for human resources (HR) professionals.
Fortunately, artificial intelligence (AI) strives to streamline the application, screening, decision-making, and hiring process for businesses and job seekers alike. Using advancements like machine learning, AI recruiting software can handle everything from auto-screening candidates to conducting sentiment analysis on job postings. All of this aims to save HR professionals valuable time while helping businesses hire the right candidates.
Interested in incorporating AI recruiting into your company's talent acquisition process? Before you hit the ground running, there are some things you should know.
Reasons you should consider using AI in the hiring process
Nearly 55% of companies are making the switch to recruitment automation—and for good reason. Here's what it can do for your hiring team.
Automates high-volume tasks, which saves your recruiters time
Any HR professional who has ever screened a resume knows how time-consuming this task can be. Combine this with the fact that the majority of resumes submitted for any given job opening will be unqualified, and it's easy to see how resume screening is one of the most challenging aspects of the recruitment process.
Of course, this isn't the only repetitive and high-volume task associated with filling a job opening. Handling assessments and scheduling job interviews with candidates can also take up a large chunk of a recruiter's time. When HR teams can't keep up, this increases the chances of losing the perfect job candidate to a more efficient competitor.
This is where AI recruiting technology can make all the difference. With built-in resume screening features, recruiters can free up their valuable time while ensuring that the most qualified candidates continue through the hiring process. Likewise, AI recruiting software can assist in scheduling interviews that work for everybody's schedule. All of this frees up recruiters' valuable and limited time to tackle other important aspects of their jobs.
Improves your chances of hiring high-quality candidates
Of course, recruiting isn't just about filling job openings; it's about sourcing high-quality candidates who will perform their jobs well and be committed to your company for the long haul. After all, with the average cost of hiring a new employee now totaling about $4,000, the last thing you want is to spend time (and money) on a new hire who won't work out.
Fortunately, recruiting tools are now making it possible to improve hire quality through machine learning and algorithms, which rely on standardizing data and matching candidates to jobs based on skill sets, knowledge, experience, and other key factors. This, in turn, leads to higher quality job candidates with better retention and lower turnover rates.
Optimizes your candidate-screening process
Using AI in recruiting can also optimize your company's candidate-screening process, improving your hiring practices and overall candidate experience.
On your recruiters' end, AI effectively addresses human bias that can often be present in job postings and throughout the screening process. By relying on AI to handle different aspects of your screening, your organization can enjoy a more diverse pool of candidates than if human recruiters sourced them.
Meanwhile, an expedited screening process improves your applicants' application experience, which reflects favorably on your business. And when you consider that 58% of job seekers have declined a job due to a poor experience during the hiring process, it's easy to see why this matters. Specifically, AI recruiting software can keep candidates in the loop regarding their applications, help schedule interviews, and even answer commonly asked questions in real time through chatbots.
Automates onboarding tasks (background checks, document collection, and more)
The potential for AI recruiting software doesn't end at the screening and interviewing process; it can also improve onboarding procedures for HR and new hires alike. This begins with automated offer letter creation (using a number of available templates). AI recruitment software can also handle other tedious onboarding tasks, such as:
- Conducting background checks
- Organizing and distributing onboarding paperwork
- Collecting electronic signatures
- Scheduling onboarding meetings
All of this can free up valuable time for both HR professionals and new hires.
The challenges of using AI in the hiring process
For all its benefits and potential, some inherent challenges come with implementing AI in the recruiting process. The good news is that you can easily overcome these challenges, allowing recruiters to take full advantage of AI technology while reaping its full benefits.
Relying too heavily on AI may give your organization a robotic feel
Many AI systems include features such as chatbots, which can assist with answering questions and scheduling interviews. Meanwhile, digitized video interviews can also be conducted without needing an in-person recruiter or HR representative on the other end. This can save hiring managers time, but it can also make the AI hiring process feel a little impersonal for the applicant. And when applicants feel detached from the hiring process, this can hurt their perception of your company.
The answer to this common problem is to ensure that you're utilizing both AI communications and direct communication from your hiring team. While there's nothing wrong with relying on chatbots and AI software to automate some parts of the process, you should still make an effort to reach out and communicate with applicants directly whenever possible. Your recruiting team is your top asset: Be sure to leverage them to build relationships with candidates.
Certain AI platforms need a lot of data to mimic human intelligence
Of course, there's also the issue of data. AI software needs a lot of data inputs to mimic human intelligence in the hiring process. For instance, resume screening features on AI platforms may need to pull data from hundreds or even thousands of resumes in order to be effective.
For most organizations, overcoming data challenges will boil down to choosing the right AI recruitment software. A reputable platform will already have large data sets available, reducing the need for collecting new information. Using AI software at the top of your recruiting funnel is recommended, as this is when the most data is required.
AI technologies require system updates and human touch to be successful
Even the best AI recruiting software will need human inputs to be successful both in the short term and in the long run. These technologies will require frequent system updates and data input from HR professionals and hiring managers. In this sense, while AI recruitment technology can save your team a lot of time, it's hardly a "set-it-and-forget-it" solution. Your team will need to devote some time, effort, and strategy to get the most out of AI for recruiting.
Again, this is where selecting the right software for your company's needs will make all the difference. Choose a platform backed by a team of experts or partners who can guide you through this and support you (and your job candidates) along the way to make the transition to AI recruiting as seamless as possible. Meanwhile, delegating system updates and similar tasks to a single HR employee will ensure that these tasks are handled appropriately without bogging down the rest of your hiring process.
Best practices for using AI in the hiring process
While there are many benefits associated with using artificial intelligence in the recruiting and hiring process, there are some common pitfalls that your team should avoid (or proactively address).
Ready to get the ball rolling by implementing an AI platform at your workplace? Keep these best practices in mind as you get started.
Put the right tools in place
Start by considering what your organization needs in an AI recruitment platform. To do this, reflect on your company's current recruiting and hiring process. What's working? What could use some improvement? Also think about which tasks eat up most of your HR team's valuable time. Is it screening resumes? Collecting signatures or onboarding documents?
Once you have a better idea of what your needs are as an organization, you can move on to select the right AI recruitment software to fulfill those needs (and more). For example, if you already know that your company receives high numbers of applicants for each job opening you post, then you can probably use help with the resume screening process. In particular, you'll want to find an AI recruitment platform with a robust screening system to optimize and expedite this task.
Some other features you may want to look for in an AI recruitment platform include:
- Automated email, chatbot, or voice recognition
- Automated data input for applicant tracking systems (ATS)
- Automated interview scheduling
- Analytics and reporting
As your company grows and scales, your AI system should do the same. Choosing a reliable AI platform like Emi that can grow with your business is a must.
Always evaluate AI tools before using them in the hiring process
As with any new software your company adopts, you must assess your new AI tools in a controlled setting before rolling them out in your hiring process. You may consider running some fake candidates through the system from start to finish as a part of this evaluation process. While the right AI platform will be intuitive and easy to use, the reality is that there is always a bit of a learning curve when it comes to using machine learning and artificial intelligence in the workplace.
All HR professionals, hiring managers, and recruiting teams within your organization should receive specific training on any new AI software before you begin using it. This will ensure that they know all the ins and outs—and that they are confident in using the platform. You should also plan to hold regular training exercises and refresher courses, especially as new features roll out.
Before you use AI software to fill an open role within your organization for the first time, it's also a good idea to conduct some controlled tests. This way, you can compare your software's candidate-screening selections to those of your own HR professionals and recruiters. Going through a simulated hiring process with your AI software is also a good way to get a feel for how it works. Of course, any reputable AI software company should also provide you with a free demo before you sign up.
Keep your company's human touch
Because too much automation in your hiring process can give things a robotic feel for candidates, it's important to have a plan in place to retain your company's human touch. Start by making sure potential candidates know that your organization is using machine learning or AI to screen applications. This can set realistic expectations from the beginning, thus improving the candidate experience and sentiment about your company.
From there, rely on AI features (such as chatbots) to handle the most repetitive and time-consuming tasks, like scheduling interviews. At the same time, make sure your organization has a detailed game plan for maintaining the human element. For example, chatbots should provide job applicants with the option to speak with an actual HR professional or recruiter when needed. Meanwhile, your team may want to consider reaching out personally to inform candidates when their application is declined.
A little bit of one-on-one communication goes a long way in maintaining that human touch in the hiring process. At the same time, your organization can still use AI software to save valuable time and source the best candidates.
Track and monitor AI success and constantly make improvements
To truly benefit from your AI recruiting platform, you'll want to track and monitor its success and your satisfaction with new hires over time. From there, you'll be able to make necessary changes to your settings or other AI processes to get the most out of your software. Performing a human review of a recently filled role in your company is a great way to test your AI to ensure it's working as you'd like it to. If not, you may need to adjust some of your algorithms and settings. The same idea applies if you begin to notice issues with the quality of your new hires.
Find out how Emi uses AI today
With so many time-consuming and cumbersome processes involved in recruiting, using AI can save your organization a lot of time and money when it comes to sourcing new job candidates. Meanwhile, machine learning makes it possible to fill those open roles with the highest quality candidates out there, improving retention and reducing turnover.
By keeping these best practices in mind, your organization can make the most of any AI recruiting software you implement. If you're looking to streamline the process and make incorporating AI into your recruiting as seamless as possible, Emi is here to help. By automating the hiring process from the moment a candidate shows interest in a position, we take the hassle out of recruiting and onboarding. Reach out today to learn more about how Emi works and to book your free demo with our team!