Presented by Indeed

Today’s workforce is experiencing rapid change. A change that is creating more productive and efficient work environments but is also causing professions and career models to morph, talent gaps to widen, and making it more challenging to find and retain right-fit employees. As advances in artificial intelligence (AI), automation, mobility, and the nature of work evolve the workplace, talent acquisition and retention — already one of the biggest challenges companies face — will become more important than ever.

The good news is many of these technologies, especially AI, are also transforming the way we identify and hire talent, making the process more productive, efficient, and diverse. Though in its early stages, AI is already able to match jobseekers with jobs, and in the near future, AI assistance will be crucial in helping companies retain employees and in helping individuals grow and meet their career aspirations.

Impact of AI on the hiring process

Job descriptions

In my last post, I commented on the prehistoric nature of job descriptions and resumes — how they are difficult to understand, one dimensional, and often infused with human biases.

Future job descriptions will be different. At Indeed, Natural Language Processing (NLP) is already improving job description categorization by finding and extracting critical criteria in postings and feeding it to higher level AI algorithms in order to identify the most relevant jobs for job seekers.  When the algorithm’s scoring shows a job seeker’s qualifications fit a role description, we encourage them to apply for the position.

Going forward, job descriptions and resumes will become more personalized and augmented with time-saving features. Job descriptions will highlight the elements of a job that are most interesting to a candidate’s personal preferences, promoting skill sets and experiences that will help attract the candidate’s attention. Then conversational “agents” — likely bots or automated systems that use human and machine input — will allow job seekers and employers to engage with each other earlier so they can rapidly understand each other’s needs.

Think about the opportunity afforded by having a chat button attached to a job description that allows a candidate to immediately ask questions about a job. Or one that allows an employer to ask detailed questions about a candidate’s experience. Not only will many questions be resolved at this stage, those that cannot will be routed to hiring managers for answers, and more importantly, be used to train the system for the future. Conversational systems like these are already beginning to show results in many fields and are even being used in Indeed assessment-based products.

Streamlining candidate skill evaluations

It is difficult to evaluate thousands of applications fairly and efficiently. Today, recruiters and hiring managers use schools, employers, and work history on a candidate’s resume as indicators of fit and future performance. While there is value in knowing someone has spent years working on something that is relevant to the job at hand, the best way to demonstrate job competency or credibility is to be able to translate that experience into real life scenarios. This allows potential employers to see if a candidate can perform the duties of a position in a simulated work evaluation. Some examples:

  • A software developer undertakes a graded coding exercise while interacting with future (or virtual) coworkers.
  • A financial analyst develops a financial model and gets graded on a conversation about financial regulations and best practices.
  • A bilingual technical support analyst is evaluated for speaking fluency, handling upset customers, and their ability to learn unfamiliar systems.

These are typical situations in today’s interview processes but they currently use a lot of resources and are dependent on the interviewer’s skills.  AI can augment resumes by automating these types of assessments. In doing so they can give hiring managers an unbiased ranking of potential candidates’ qualifications. Imagine a library of tens of thousands of assessments where a hiring manager can select a customized set of job competency simulations for a needed role. These customized evaluations can provide both parties with the transparency needed to find the right fit, while saving time for higher level human connections that can build trust between both parties and result in a high-confidence hire.

Post-hire career planning

AI’s role doesn’t end when a job seeker accepts a job. Today’s workers expect to switch jobs at least several times over in the course of a career. Studies show millennials, switch jobs more frequently than previous generations. Companies would prefer those job changes be internal. AI can help employers map out an individual’s career path to ensure employees stay at their company. And AI algorithms, when given skill sets, performance, and desires, can even help employers know what to do to keep employees growing within their organization.

Likewise, AI can help the employee understand what to do now to ensure future career success.  Imagine AI that notifies you when employees should ask for a raise, clue them in to take a training course, or connect them with the right people to make their career aspirations come true. At Indeed we strive to become a career companion, one that helps guide people through every step of their career journey.

The future of job matching

Matching technology is continuing to evolve — becoming more personalized, seamless, and automated. Indeed envisions a world where there is enough data that people can virtually just press a button and receive a job offer.  We are working tirelessly on the technologies needed to make this real.  However, while AI technology can make the process much more efficient, accepting a job still requires the decision of the job seeker.

It’s a decision influenced by relationships, goals, and an individual’s definition of meaningful work.  AI technology gives recruiters, companies, and job seekers more time to focus on the human connections that build trust and inspire career development. In this way, AI is rapidly transforming the way we identify and hire talent and is headlong on the path to becoming an employee’s career companion.

Raj Mukherjee is SVP of Product at Indeed. 

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