AI and Its Impact on Recruiters

Self-driving cars. Digital Assistants. Chatbots. The future is now, and some of us are eager to embrace it. Others, however, have a dystopian image of tomorrow, where artificial intelligence (AI) replaces workers and leaves us without purpose. I like to say that I think AI is far more likely to be Jarvis giving us all iron man suits vs. Skynet sending the Terminator. Machines will do more and more of the work that we don’t care to do any longer and allow us to focus on the things we do that add value. Let’s face it; there is a minimal upside in tracking and chasing people to finish a background check or scheduling and rescheduling an interview. Jarvis can handle that stuff; you’re Tony Stark, you have better things to do.

I’d also like to remind us all that machines have always been part of human advancement and improved labor productivity.

In the First Industrial Revolution, people were worried about steam machines replacing their work. I think that we have some of that same fear in our world today, but what’s happened in our history is that new jobs have emerged to replace the old jobs. With the rise of factories, there was the rise of factory workers and managers during the industrial revolution.  So, the optimist in me says that this will ultimately happen in this “Fourth Industrial Revolution” and we will enter a greater age of productivity for human beings.

Machines will continue to take on more and more of what machines do well. They will take on matching, searching, initial contact, screening, even interviewing as we have seen in the case study that HireVue has announced with Unilever. There will need to be a focus on doing what humans do best and where the most significant human value-add resides in this new environment.

There will also be several new roles that emerge at the intersection of where humans meet machines. Some of the possible new jobs in this world could include:

Bot Trainers: Bots that can take on pieces of the recruiting process are challenging. They require training and retraining over a period, and this isn’t generic. It is specific to each company and culture.

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Monitors: The role of recruiting in the future, if we were to move to a more fully automated process, there will still be a need for recruiters to act as monitors or managers of high volumes of requisitions in the automation process. Sometimes the conveyor belt will get stuck, and we will need a person to get it unstuck.

Experience designers: People who design the automated experience that customers and in our case, candidates will go through to make it a positive experience all around.

Conversation engineers: Bot based conversations don’t just fall out of the sky. I have talked to some of the bot companies in our industry that have hired linguists and theater majors to write an immersive dialogue that will capture the candidate’s attention. These human skills will grow in demand as AI grows more and more prevalent.

I’d love to hear your ideas of the emerging jobs of the future! Please add your thoughts in the comments.


As Global Head of Technology and Analytics for Randstad Sourceright, Jason Roberts leverages more than 15 years of leadership and recruiting expertise to identify and implement technologies that will ensure jobs get filled quickly and efficiently.  Drawing on his extensive experience in big data, Roberts also focuses on the thoughtful application of analytics, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and predictive technologies to drive action through automation and data-driven insight by the recruiting team.  He is responsible for ensuring Randstad Sourceright’s recruitment process outsourcing (RPO) division carries on the company’s tradition of exceptional service delivery, vital diligence and industry-leading support.


3 Comments on “AI and Its Impact on Recruiters

  1. OK, Jason, we need to talk at Sourcecon, like we REALLY need to talk. This was a great article and I have to many ideas to write down here to go over with you and Jim. I hope you are going to find your way there at the end of September, if not lets set up a time to chat.

    1. JR, I’ll echo what Derek wrote. I’ll go even further up AI Avenue by suggesting new interdisciplinary majors to prepare people to address areas that impact bias, decision-making, and learning. See you and Jim at SourceCon.

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