Talent Acquisition

How AI and Automation Will Impact Recruiting

There’s a lot of noise and concern about how artificial intelligence and automation will impact business as we know it. As automation begins to eliminate unskilled labor, it marks just the beginning of a workforce revolution that will transform every aspect of how organizations function and how work gets accomplished. For recruiters, the impact of automation and AI will impact the role of recruitment as well as how talent is assessed.

For many, the skills gap is becoming wider and today’s world requires a workforce that constantly engages in learning from soft to hard skills. Automation marks the age of self-responsibility. Talent must take control of their own careers while recruiters need to possess a learners’ mindset.

Recruiting became clearer

Recruiters and acquisition specialists need to be able to clearly assess the critical skills needed by talent. Creativity, problem solving and analytical skills are at the top of the list as the most desired abilities. As automation and artificial intelligence becomes commonplace, corporations will undergo disruption from the top down as they make the necessary organizational changes and adjustments. Entire departments will be eradicated or refocused to meet the new workplace needs. Keep in mind, automation even threatens C-suite roles. Work expectations will be transformed at every organizational level. While some speculate automation will usher in the end of work for most people, we expect it will actually transform most jobs and the needed skills. The new environment requires talent to continually engage in learning and developing their skill sets to remain relevant.

Everyone’s job being re-engineered

Will automation eliminate unskilled labor? Yes. People who perform repetitive tasks can assume their roles will be eliminated, as will most positions across the service industry. But what about tech? It’s going to have a huge impact on developers and technical roles who will likely see machines take over much of what they do. Some suspect coding will become obsolete as a profession in a few years. This means being nimble, hiring trainable or retaining learning oriented workers will become critical. New positions will emerge and job titles will shift. Recruiters will look for people who demonstrate both resilience and agility to plug into roles more than ever.

Learn something every day to be competitive and relevant

We will see the need for a skilled workforce that is teachable. Even for CEOs, it means more education and a willingness to continue to learn at just about every level. For some individuals, this means going back to school for an MBA or PHD. For others, it means MOOCs or in-house corporate training and coaching. We expect coaching will take on a much larger role in corporate culture. Recruiters will have to work across departments playing the role of facilitator and chief architect. They need to possess of comprehensive understanding of what will be required of leadership roles, the needed adaptations and skills, as well as a handle on succession planning.

Recruiters need to understand how talent are evolving

Recruiters need to be continually learning and be able to make good judgments on the various types of training programs and then translate what they mean in terms of skills and qualifications. More resumes will emerge from the “perpetual student.” These individuals continue to learn instead of taking long breaks to attain an MBA. They are constantly enrolled in classes because they understand that the emerging world requires constant training to keep on top of technology. There will be less separation between formal schooling and work, as people continue to learn while working. MOOCS will be a vital resource. The ability to assess the quality of the classes that can impact the role they’re hiring for will become critical. Recruiters need to be able accurately assess the resumes of such talent.

Human intelligence remains essential

Most positions will eliminate the need for routine and redundant tasks and become more reliant on data for making decisions. There’s been a lot of discussion about the emphasis on skills such as critical thinking and problem solving, as well as the ability to master interpersonal relationships. In part, because these skills take on a more prominent importance in an increasingly technical world.  There’s a growing awareness that in light of our increasing technical and technology driving work environments the human touch becomes more vital to counterbalance the impact of technology.

Today is the era of organizations that can adapt and renew

For recruiters, the hiring process requires searching for talent and making selections based on demonstrated interpersonal and leadership skills now more than ever. The ability to lead automated organizations is becoming a competitive differentiation when hiring talent. A softer management side is also a sought after trait. As organizations work to understand how to best balance a working environment that completely relies on machines to do much of the routine as well as data based tasks and more, new management skills become paramount. C-suite needs to manage not only humans but also machines and their integration into work while keeping the company on track with targets, goals and objectives. We’re building organizations capable of self-renewal. The hiring process must account for how roles change as a result of automation and more, as well as anticipate what is coming in order to continue moving the hiring process FORWARD.

About the author: Caroline Stokes is the Founder of Forward Human Capital Solutions. She is an executive career coach and headhunter. 

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