If you are looking for an answer to the question What is Artificial Intelligence? and you only have a minute, then here's the definition the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence offers on its home page: "the scientific understanding of the mechanisms underlying thought and intelligent behavior and their embodiment in machines."
However, if you are fortunate enough to have more than a minute, then please get ready to embark upon an exciting journey exploring AI (but beware, it could last a lifetime) …
According to a recent TNG survey, 73 percent of job seekers in Sweden believe they've been discriminated against during the job application process. By replacing the human recruiter with Tengai, TNG and Furhat believe they can make the screening process more fair while still providing a "human" touch. "I was quite sceptical at first before meeting Tengai, but after the meeting I was absolutely struck," healthcare recruiter Petra Elisson, who has been involved in the testing, told the BBC. "At first I really, really felt it was a robot, but when going more deeply into the interview I totally forgot that she's not human." As for ensuring that Tengai doesn't reflect the biases of its creators and training data -- a problem that has cropped up with other AIs -- Furhat's chief scientist, Gabriel Skantze, told the BBC the company is making it a point to conduct test interviews with a diverse mix of recruiters and volunteers before Tengai is ever in the position to actually decide an applicant's employment fate.
Despite working in the human resources for over eight years for some of the top organizations in Canada, I have been somewhat blind to the future of work being driven by automation and artificial intelligence (AI). That is, until I read the 2018 Future of Jobs report by World Economic Forum. According to that report, 50% of companies expect that by 2022, their full-time workforce will be somewhat reduced by automation. It is alarming to note that nearly a quarter of these companies are undecided or unlikely to retrain their existing employees and two-thirds expect workers to retrain themselves. This expectation raises an important question of how employees could know which new jobs they should retrain for when these jobs have not yet been created.
"It's pervasive in all aspects of how we think about people, getting the right people on the right projects and building careers," said Jeff Wong, chief innovation officer for Ernst & Young, which brands itself as EY. EY in 2017 launched an AI-powered chatbot named "Goldie" that has answered more than 2.2 million questions for employees across 138 countries to date. Now, the company, which hires about 65,000 people annually, is considering ways to use artificial intelligence to help human resources staff select qualified candidates. "We're trying to be particularly thoughtful about how we apply AI in this particular circumstance," Mr. Wong said. Emphasis on diversity, inclusion and fairness are requirements for such an AI system, he said.
Subconscious bias on the part of potential employers could become a thing of the past, thanks to a'robo-interviewer' currently in development. Tengai, a torso-less robot that speaks and smiles, will judge you purely on your abilities - leaving race, gender and other potentially influencing factors aside. Sweden's largest recruitment company TNG is already using the robot with the human-like interface in a series of trials. Tengai (pictured), the torso-less robot that speaks and smiles, is being trained at Sweden's largest recruitment company TNG to learn to conduct interviews through AI technology. Furhat is a social robot created by Stockholm-based startup Furhat Robotics.
With AI, your recruiters no longer have to sort through hundreds of resumes for a new job posting (often only having 5-6 seconds per resume review). AI can match and rank candidates to the right job, increasing the quality submittal rate by over 2x. Before AI, your recruiters had to manually contact candidates to engage and pre-screen them for the job. But an AI powered chatbot can have detailed, personalized, and entirely machine driven conversations with millions of candidates to screen for the right ones. With AI, the recruitment process can be accelerated by over 35%, freeing up your recruiters time to focus on engaging top talent, building your company brand, and beating the competition.
"Automated artificial intelligence systems can look through resumes faster than a human can and flag the ones that might be of interest," says Tammy Cohen, Founder and Chief Visionary Officer of InfoMart. AI takes all the data stored in resumes, staffing agency databases, online job boards, and social media to help shortlist the most fitting applicants. "Companies like Ideal use AI that only looks for hard skills and qualifying experience. It determines which candidates will be best suited for the job without once glancing at where they live or determining how old they are. Another system – Avrio - judges candidates based on their credentials and then gives them a score based on how well they fit the criteria provided," adds Tammy.
The world's first robot designed to carry out unbiased job interviews is being tested by Swedish recruiters. But can it really do a better job than humans? Measuring 41cm (16in) tall and weighing 35kg (77lbs) she's at eye level as she sits on top of a table directly across from the candidate she's about to interview. Her glowing yellow face tilts slightly to the side. Then she blinks and smiles lightly as she poses her first question: "Have you ever been interviewed by a robot before?"
How'human' will HR remain, with things like AI and automation on such a meteoric rise? Technology won't take the "human" out of human resources anytime soon, but tools like process automation and artificial intelligence are shaking up HR departments around the world. Machines are taking on time-consuming administrative tasks, empowering recruiters to focus on people management. As businesses shift toward human capital-centered social enterprises, leveraging modern resources for HR rejuvenation is pivotal. The top players reshaping HR departments are business process automation, robotics, and artificial intelligence.
You are head of talent acquisition. You're about to make contact with what recruiters call a cold prospect, someone not actively looking for a job. You know this because their CV isn't on any job boards. Neither have they registered with LinkedIn's Open Candidate tool, which basically says "call me". And yet far from this being the shot in the dark it used to be, you're calling safe in the knowledge that the recipient will be seven times more likely to be interested in what you say.
While the wonders of artificial intelligence are often hyped beyond recognition, AI-powered recruitment software is actually offering real advantages to telecom businesses. "We have successfully optimized our recruitment advertising for both source effectiveness and cost control through deployment of AI tools, and will continue to expand AI further into our recruitment processes as the technology matures," says Kathy Flynn, VP of talent acquisition at CenturyLink. "There is an extraordinary opportunity for AI-driven software to completely transform recruitment processes," Flynn adds. "Particularly in accelerating the candidate funnel, enhancing the candidate experience, identifying qualified candidates with diverse backgrounds and experiences and reducing recruiters' administrative tasks." VMware is another early adopter.