Artificial intelligence (AI) is being used across a range of industries to drive efficiencies. For instance, in the pharma industry, AI speeds up the discovery and development of life-saving medicines, while in retail it allows companies to have near-real-time optics of their inventory, ensuring it can keep supplying sought-after goods to consumers.
But what role does AI have in the HR sector? By automating boring, repetitive tasks, artificial intelligence enables HR professionals to personalize and improve the experience of candidates have when applying for jobs. However, it also provides opportunities to advance the workplace experiences of employees.
Research by the new HR tech unicorn Phenom suggests that Fortune 500 companies are not taking advantage of AI to improve candidate experience during recruitment processes.
In the foreword to Phenom’s 2021 benchmark report, the company’s CEO and co-founder Mahe Bayireddi wrote: “The [HR] industry’s commitment to adapt and forge ahead has never been stronger.
“But AI and automation must be embraced.
“This is the only way organizations will be able to reimagine a better experience for every stakeholder in the talent journey — as well as discover best-fit talent and develop employees like never before.”
An AI blindspot
According to Phenom’s fifth annual candidate experience report, 92% of Fortune 500 companies scored poorly in the use of AI. Also, only 9% of the companies had a chatbot on their career site.
While Fortune 500 companies are doing a decent job at attracting talent, they are struggling to successfully engage candidates who applied for their open roles. Across all industries, 90% of Fortune 500 companies were ranked as poor in terms of employee engagement, while only 57% were ranked as poor for attraction.
Phenom places the blame primarily at the door of their failure to embrace AI and automation.
The company says chatbots are particularly useful because they allow job seekers to find the right job at the right time — as they operate 24/7 to answer questions schedule interviews, and much more.
Fortune 500 companies are also missing a trick in terms of intuitive job search and apply processes – 89% did not have this feature.
The report also found that 94% did not provide job recommendations based on browsing history on their career site, while 91% did not recommend jobs based on the candidate’s profile, and 85% did not have location detection to suggest nearby jobs.
These things would better engage candidates and could be easily achieved with the help of AI and automation.
In the report, Phenom noted: “The longer it takes for a candidate to find a relevant job and apply, the greater the chance that they will abandon the process altogether and look elsewhere.
“AI and automation can help by matching candidates with best-fit jobs based on skills and experience, increasing applications, and filling open roles faster.”
Examples of Fortune 500 companies that are bucking this largely negative trend and using AI well to drive candidate engagement are MGM Resorts International, Microsoft, Merck, Apple, and DuPont.
The need to personalize recruitment
Applying for jobs can be a lonely, frustrating experience, especially as more often than not candidates never hear back from the employer about their application. Phenom’s research found only 1% of Fortune 500 candidates communicated the status of an application to a candidate.
Whereas AI can introduce personalization to the job-hunting experience to the benefit of both the candidate and their potential future employer.
“Companies that deliver the most personalized talent journeys will be at an advantage when competing for future employees.”