Conversations on AI’s impact on the world of work are no longer theoretical. It’s already impacting our day to day products and everyday lives. By 2020, candidates applying to jobs at 20% of large global enterprises will also interact with chatbots before recruiters, says a report by Forrester.
It’s estimated that by 2022, chatbots will save over $8 billion in cost savings (up from a mere $20 million last year), while over one-third of business executives say that the time freed up from using digital assistants allows them to focus on deep thinking and creating.8,9
These substantial, measurable benefits are particularly suitable for HR’s endless quest for faster, more efficient, and more utilized service. With sometimes stagnant budgets and headcount to contend with, more HR departments are incorporating AI technology to great effect.
Exactly how does AI help HR productivity?
In a word, input. Data input, more specifically.
Functionality that sorts data at exponentially higher rates of speed, accuracy, and capacity can mean a huge increase in the volume possible with any undertaking. Remember that a machine can consume more data in one second than a human being can in a decade—without forgetting or fatigue.
AI can make many HR-relevant processes more programmatic for increased department efficiency, including:
1. Application Filtering – Enable chatbots to correspond with online applicants to compare experience levels with desired requisition profiles, ensuring only qualified candidates reach your desk. Also, use AI technology to scan resumés for the right skills.
2. Expense Reports – Use visual capture technology to extract relevant information from a receipt scan and input it into a web form, for faster processing and approval (which can also be automated).
3. Payroll and Benefits Queries – Replace an underused FAQ portal with chatbots to answer the most common, time-consuming questions about vacation time or healthcare options, whether it’s open enrollment time or not.
4. Quality Assurance – With robust anomaly detection, you can be alerted to countless HR concerns, from an erroneous overpayment in payroll to unusual system access that may indicate a security breach, regulatory ignorance, or other problems.
5. Administration – Enable a “virtual assistant” via ambient AI (think Amazon’s Alexa) to receive, sort, and appropriately file or schedule communication from email and voicemail (and later remind you about and prepare you for associated events).
Many HR professionals would certainly be happy to completely hand over repetitive, time-consuming, non-value-added activities in favor of strategic duties that highlight one’s ingenuity.
Like any business intelligence initiative, the integrity of data is paramount when it comes to AI in human resources. For HR professionals, the definition of “the right data” has in recent years expanded to include information from other systems. Specifically, this means ERP for financial data; CRM for sales, marketing and service information; SCM for procurement, inventory, warehouse, 3PL, IoT, and other data. And HCM solutions for human capital data. By deploying a unified data platform in the cloud, companies can enable employees to further optimize processes.
Despite the excitement over AI’s transformative power, companies are facing implementation challenges, with “lack of appropriate skills and talent within the organization” being the top one at 64%.13 This dilemma appears to be the norm in a landscape where adaptability to still-unknown environments is becoming a criterion for candidates.
It’s only natural, then, that a new school of thought has rechristened the acronym AI “adaptive intelligence,” to denote a highly advanced machine-learning system that continually learns to become more refined and insightful over time. Since humans must always be ready to adapt, shouldn’t an HR software system do the same?
This article was first published on Oracle.com