VOICE August 2017 - page 3

One of the key drivers for HR in this era is gaining
the best performance from people. HR is increasing-
ly concerned with creating a positive work culture in
which people can thrive. Our younger generations
expect this and appreciate a working environment
that is enjoyable and fun. To fulfil the important and
ever-changing role of HR requires a different way of
working that frees up time from the more routine
personnel issues to provide resource to create posi-
tive and productive organisational culture. Here’s
where artificial intelligence (AI) can come into play
and is already being used to great effect:
Personnel
One example is the creation of dedicated chatbots to
address a range of personnel issues that currently
take up HR time. A chatbot (bot is short for robot) is
an automated software application that is capable of
electronic conversations. Chatbots are a form of AI
that can talk to people usually via text. Employees
can opt to talk to a dedicated chatbot and ask a range
of personnel type questions that they would normal-
ly go to the HR department for answers. So for ex-
ample, if they ask about “what are my holiday entitle-
ments?” and “how many days holiday do I have left?”
the chatbot can answer their queries directly. There
is a limit to how much they can answer, dependent
on how they are set up in the first place. Over time
chatbots use their AI to pick up on common ques-
tions and identify trends. For example, it might notify
the HR team that several people have asked about
late pay, highlighting that there may be an issue even
before it is raised with the team.
Recruitment and Retention
Besides the use of AI in tandem with chatbots to an-
swer a range of questions, AI can also be useful in
recruitment. There is one software application being
developed which is aimed at finding candidates
based on just a job description. After giving the AI
the job description it will search the internet for
promising candidates and crunch data to suggest
who it thinks would be best for the job. This concept
reaches beyond the normal limits of attracting poten-
tial applicants and has the scope to increased signifi-
cantly the response rates to vacancies.
Once candidates have applied another AI application
goes one step further. It takes the job description
and learns from Wikipedia what characteristics and
skills are needed. It then crunches the data from the
applicants’ CVs and pulls out those applicants who it
thinks would be best suited to the job. Shortlisting
applicants can be very time consuming; this applica-
tion takes the ‘legwork’ out of the process and cre-
ates quality time to scrutinize the selected shortlist.
“Once you have employed good
quality candidates, it is important to
retain them”
There is AI software that will alert you if it believes
the employee is thinking of leaving the company.
Some AI even specialize in this. They will look at
many factors about the employee and determine the
risk that they will leave the business. This is based on
several factors such as current position and remu-
neration. It then analyses data and compares it to
how other employees have reacted in similar situa-
tions. This information means that if there is an em-
ployee at high risk of handing in their notice, HR can
step in and have the strategies in place to prevent a
good employee leaving.
Productivity
AI’s have been developed to tracks the activity on
employees’ computers. The AI tracks browsing hab-
its, e-mails and even keystrokes. Analysis of this in-
formation and can determine what the employees’
productivity is like. HR and line managers can use
this information to address an issue early and before
the situation deteriorates. Likewise, if a manager
notices a change in productivity in one of their team,
they can check the data to give them clues as to the
reasons behind this change.
Artificial Intelligence and how
it is touching HR
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