Jobvite recently published a survey on how recruiters feel about AI and automation in talent acquisition.

In recruiting, artificial intelligence is being used to streamline or automate some part of the workflow, especially repetitive, high-volume, administrative tasks.

Contrary to popular belief, the talent acquisition field seems to be embracing AI and is optimistic about its potential to improve their jobs.

Half of recruiters (49%) feel positive about the effects of AI and automation on their jobs while 42% are indifferent, and only 7% believed AI will have a negative effect.

How AI and automation are being used in talent acquisition

AI is currently being used in five main domains in recruiting:

1. Job postings: AI can help recruiters by using sentiment analysis to identify potentially biased language and provide suggestions on creating more widely appealing job descriptions.

2. Sourcing: Automated sourcing uses technology that finds candidates online that fit the requirements of your role. This can involve general searches for candidates by scraping the web or specific searches within resume databases such as CareerBuilder.

3. Candidate rediscovery: Similar to external sourcing, AI can analyze your job description and then search your existing ATS database to rediscover candidates who have applied to your company in the past who fit the requirements of a current job opening.

4. Resume screening: AI analyzes your existing resume database to learn what employees’ experience, skills, and other qualifications are and applies this knowledge to automatically screen, grade, and shortlist new candidates from A to D.

5. Candidate outreach: Similar to Alexa, Siri, and Google Home, a recruitment chatbot uses natural language processing to collect information from candidates, ask screening questions, answer FAQs about the job, and schedule an interview. Information collected by the chatbot is fed into an ATS or sent directly to a human recruiter to follow up.

As a bonus, AI technology has the potential to reduce bias at the sourcing and screening stages by ignoring candidate demographics (e.g., race, gender, age) when making decisions.

What recruiters want from AI and automation

The desire for AI to automate or streamline tedious administrative tasks is reflected in Jobvite’s survey results.

The tasks recruiters would like to see automated the most are:

  • 54% interview scheduling
  • 52% background and reference checking
  • 49% analytics/measurement
  • 47% sourcing candidates

On the flip side, AI and automation is meant to free up recruiters’ to do more high-touch, enjoyable work.

The tasks recruiters would least like to see automated are:

  • 53% interview process
  • 51% phone screenings
  • 47% salary negotiations

Recruiters’ fear of being replaced is low because they believe certain social skills can’t be replaced by a computer:

  • 79% leadership/management
  • 59% offer negotiations
  • 45% communication

AI and the evolution of recruiting

The biggest impact that AI and automation seem to be having so far is spurring conversations about how the recruiting field will look like going forward.

72% of recruiters believe their approach to hiring will need to evolve as AI and automation become more prevalent.

Three major trends are also driving this conversation about recruiting’s need to evolve.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the ratio was 6.6 unemployed persons per job opening in 2009 and today it’s 1.1.

The tighter labour market, increase in hiring volume, and stagnant recruiter headcount means that recruiters believe the most important trend to learn and understand are sourcing tools and technology according to SourceCon’s latest State Of Sourcing Survey.

Forward-thinking talent acquisition professionals understand resistance is futile (hehe) and are educating themselves on how AI software tools can improve their workflow and help them evolve along with the recruiting field.