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Apr 8, 2019

We are not in danger of being assimilated into the Borg collective. AI is not self-aware…yet.  Automation isn’t going to replace everyone, and it is not perfect, but it’s learning.

That last statement is probably the most relevant aspect of how AI has and will evolve within the world of recruitment. It is a work in progress, but if you’re not spending any time exploring the technology and the tools that exist today, you’re very likely going to be left behind.

Not all technology is disruptive or even needs to be. The music industry fought the transition to online distribution, and ultimately, it disrupted their business model. But it didn’t have to be that way. Blockbuster Video didn’t adapt to the where technology moved, but Netflix did.

Telecommunications moved from the telegraph to the telephone (aka the landline). The telephone ultimately led to the internet and the mobile phone world we have today. The companies that adapted to the new technology remain competitive in the current market. The ones who did not, who had their entire business model disrupted, should be reminders to all of us that to move with the technological current and change as technology advances.

In recruiting, we’re seeing tools developed that will automate and streamline recruiting and sourcing processes. Failure to adapt can and will lead to you becoming irrelevant. Fear of Recruiting AI could create that self-fulfilling prophecy, and you could be out of a job. How long until that becomes a real possibility remains to be seen. It could be years before Recruiting AI gets to the point that it has learned enough to take on many of the tasks of a human recruiter.

Social media is full of experienced recruiters claiming that AI isn’t ready for prime time and its limitations mean we shouldn’t use it. AI learns from usage. Granted, as evidenced by Amazon’s recent decision to end its AI recruiting model, AI can learn bias. However, knowing that is the case and knowing that AI isn’t perfect, just means we need to question the results and ask our vendors to improve their products and services. We have intuition. We have our “guts.” We are the check and balance on the results produce by AI tools.

That’s the thing, recruiting AI is a tool. I don’t trust LinkedIn to be the be all to end all. I don’t trust Entelo, ZoomInfo or Hoovers to provide all of the candidates qualified for a role I’m working to fill. AI needs to be part of your toolbox, and over time, it will very likely make us more efficient in our processing of applicants/referrals and with the engagement of passive candidates.

Remember, most tools already are implementing some aspect of AI in helping to create relevancy in our search results without our direct knowledge. AI impacts your social media with targeted advertising and changing your news feed as it learns your tastes and preferences. AI is already part of your work life in how you recruit and source, so adopt, adapt, and question the tools. Keep learning and embrace the change. Because ultimately, resistance is futile.

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