HR is transforming, and with the latest technologies paving the way, the HR industry is on the cusp of a significant evolution. As the machine learning market is projected to skyrocket from 140 billion dollars to approximately 2 trillion dollars by 2030, the potential impact on HR becomes increasingly evident. Amidst the myriad possibilities, a pressing question emerges: How will technologies like “machine learning” help HR advance in the future?
This exploration uncovers the top 5 machine learning use cases shaping HR departments. Focusing initial efforts in these strategic areas allows organizations to optimize processes, gain valuable insights into employees and talent, identify at-risk individuals, and enhance the overall employee experience. As machine learning transforms HR practices, these practical starting points offer companies a gateway to initiate their machine learning journey, empowering their workforce and driving transformative change. Let’s dive into each use case, unveiling how machine learning can be applied today to bring empowerment and innovation to your people and business.
Machine learning, a branch of artificial intelligence, powers the personalized recommendations we receive on platforms like Netflix and Amazon, suggesting movies or series tailored to our preferences. Employing algorithms trained on extensive datasets, machine learning enables the creation of models that outperform humans in tasks such as photo classification, data analysis, and price forecasting. Widely integrated into digital products and services, machine learning stands as a prevalent and transformative force within the realm of artificial intelligence, influencing our daily digital experiences.
This technology enables computers to learn from historical data, constructing mathematical models to predict future outcomes based on past information. Its applications span a multitude of areas, including recommendation systems, email filtering, Facebook auto-tagging, image recognition, and speech analysis. To understand its impact on Human Resources, let’s explore how ML is harnessed in this context.
Machine Learning (ML) offers numerous advantages in HR processes, ranging from substantial time savings and reduced decision-making risk to maintaining a balanced workforce.
In talent acquisition, AI assists in identifying relevant skills and traits by analyzing multiple CVs and job descriptions. Moreover, it streamlines communication with candidates, allowing chatbots to schedule interviews efficiently.
AI/ML tools significantly enhance routine tasks such as sending emails, generating interview questions for technical positions, and monitoring process evolution. The application of machine learning in HR ensures swift documentation of interviews, audio files, and videos.
In the era of personalized interactions and instant responses, ML meets expectations by providing real-time access to HR resources. It goes further by delivering customized training and career path recommendations to employees, fostering effective communication within the organization.
5 HR Machine Learning Use Cases
Machine learning continues to evolve within the HR industry, with early adopters leveraging the technology to enhance business outcomes and streamline operational processes. By minimizing routine tasks through ML, HR professionals can allocate more time to focus on people-centric initiatives, refining strategies to attract, develop, and retain talent. Let’s explore how ML is changing the landscape of HR operations.
1. Hiring the Best Talent
Many businesses now leverage machine learning tools to enhance their ability to identify qualified candidates. Employing cutting-edge intelligent algorithms, platforms like Indeed, Glassdoor, and LinkedIn successfully harness machine learning to streamline searches and identify well-suited applicants.
HR chatbots proactively engage with applicants, posing preliminary screening questions and collecting candidate data. Machine learning then utilizes this information to assess applicants, presenting the results to recruiters. This integration of ML assists recruiters in selecting candidates with the highest caliber while aiding applicants in quickly and effortlessly discovering suitable opportunities.
Furthermore, machine learning can conduct background checks or additional research to verify that prospective candidates meet the requirements. By analyzing the traits of potential candidates, ML facilitates the provision of job opportunities aligned with their abilities, experiences, and personalities.
2. Increasing Employee Engagement
HR employs machine learning (ML) to delve into numerous employee data signals, enabling more personalized communication with employees. The system analyzes hundreds of unique data points related to employee engagement across the organization, a task that could take humans days or weeks but is efficiently processed by ML in the HR system.
These algorithms aggregate information from diverse sources, including surveys, HRIS systems, and more, to determine factors influencing employee engagement—such as workload, satisfaction, pay, management relationships, and time off. Machine learning employs predictive analytics and real-time monitoring to identify patterns contributing to employee turnover.
By anticipating staff turnover ahead of time, HR teams gain insights to pinpoint breakdowns and strategically focus efforts to enhance employee engagement and reduce attrition rates proactively.
3. Minimizing Biases in Hiring Decisions
While human interaction remains essential in AI usage, the integration of machine learning in HR provides precise and valuable insights, enhancing hiring efficiency. Notably, it plays a crucial role in mitigating human biases that might impede your business from selecting the most qualified applicants.
Machine learning simplifies the candidate assessment process for hiring managers by concealing bias-prone personal information, such as last names, regions of residence, family backgrounds, etc. It also assists in crafting unbiased job descriptions to attract a diverse pool of skilled candidates. ML algorithms further ensure equitable compensation for hires at the same level, eliminating manual biases.
While machine learning acts as a check against potential biases within HR teams, it’s imperative for HR leaders to proactively address potential biases within ML algorithms. Human oversight becomes essential in identifying intrinsic biases in these tools and scrutinizing their decisions and predictions.
Many organizations prioritize fostering diversity and inclusion, and machine learning algorithms offer invaluable assistance to HR teams in identifying discrimination and biases within hiring, performance reviews, and promotion processes. These algorithms, for example, can detect language that may unintentionally convey bias or prejudice against specific demographic groups based on age, skin color, or other characteristics. In HR, ML also plays a role in pinpointing employees who may not have actively contributed to decision-making or engagement initiatives, prompting managers to encourage their involvement.
To maximize the impact of this technology, those working with ML systems must actively train them to be inclusive, taking into account gender roles and diversity considerations to enhance workplace diversity. Leveraging ML for better decisions in hiring, salary, promotion, and retention will inherently contribute to promoting a culture of inclusion and diversity.
5. Workforce Optimization and Planning
To achieve their business goals, firms must prioritize effective workforce planning. Leveraging AI and ML algorithms can optimize scheduling and resource allocation by considering personnel availability, skill sets, workload distribution, and business requirements. This approach can lead to more effective staffing, increased output, and a more efficient use of human resources. Furthermore, workforce management can utilize machine learning to automate routine tasks, analyze data, and forecast future requirements. As a result, businesses can operate more successfully, and employee performance is likely to see improvement.
Machine learning algorithms can assess historical data, current labor demographics, and market trends to forecast future personnel requirements. This equips HR departments with better insights for decision-making in hiring, succession planning, and skill development, ensuring the right individuals are placed in suitable positions at the right time.
Machine learning in HR is reshaping talent acquisition, employee engagement, and decision-making processes, ushering in a transformative era for the HR industry. By harnessing data and sophisticated algorithms, human resources departments can elevate productivity, enrich employee experiences, and enhance overall business outcomes.
The applications of machine learning in HR are diverse and impactful, spanning from automating resume screening to identifying attrition risks. ML-powered applications generate predictions that complement human judgment, enabling more informed decision-making. However, the success of ML relies on trust, and such trust can only be established through adherence to ethically sound business practices.
Frequently Asked Questions
How are AI and ML used in HR?
In HR management, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning technology are now utilized to enhance the effectiveness of HR operations, including facilitating decision-making, automating processes, simplifying onboarding, improving the employee experience, providing strong support for decisions, and more.
Can performance evaluation procedures be made better by machine learning?
Yes, machine learning may enhance performance reviews by examining performance data and locating key performance indicators (KPIs) associated with success, resulting in more objective and focused evaluations.
How does machine learning predict employee attrition?
Machine learning predicts employee attrition by examining multiple data points, such as employee demographics, job satisfaction surveys, and performance indicators. This enables HR departments to take preventative action by identifying employees who are more likely to leave.
Srikant Chellappa is the Co-Founder and CEO at Engagedly and is a passionate entrepreneur and people leader. He is an author, producer/director of 6 feature films, a music album with his band Manchester Underground, and is the host of The People Strategy Leaders Podcast. He is currently working on his next book, Ikigai at the Workplace, which is slated for release in the fall of 2023.