Human vs. AI Recruiting

Written By: Courtney Keene

AI, or Artificial Intelligence, is quickly becoming the go-to intelligent tool of choice for companies that want to reshape their hiring departments with an eye toward the future. However, for all its advances, hiring departments, recruiters, and HR professionals should be wary of relying too heavily on AI to find, recruit, and screen top talent.

Currently, AI is valued for its assistance in:

  • Sourcing candidates
  • Scanning resumes for keywords/key information
  • Conducting preliminary screenings
  • Analyzing candidate speech, facial expressions, and behavior during interviews

It seems that AI can take part in nearly every step of the process – should recruiters worry that AI will replace them and their experience, judgment, and gut instinct? Let’s take a closer look at what AI can and cannot do.

The great benefit of AI in the hiring process

In times of low unemployment, qualified candidates are few and far between. Competing to attract, recruit, and onboard top talent slows down the hiring process considerably and puts tremendous pressure on hiring departments. However, AI promises to speed up the recruiting process while cutting costs at the same time. Having the power of efficient, precise, and inexpensive recruiting can be an incredible advantage to any company.

However, is there a price to pay for all this agility and speed?

The question of bias in AI

AI firms often claim that their tech does away with human bias. After all, code and algorithms can’t show prejudice.

Or can they?

One of the biggest questions surrounding AI today is if it is more or less biased than humans when selecting qualified candidates. Some argue that AI is inherently influenced by human prejudice because it is created by humans, while others point to established research stating that voice AI is still rife with race and gender bias. For example, who governs what counts as “good” or “proper” speech? Moreover, does voice AI penalize candidates with particular accents, dialects, or inflections?

The current limitations of AI include a lack of understanding of nuance. On the other hand, human recruiters are well-versed in the ways that candidates may warrant careful consideration.

Without a balance between human and AI recruiting skills, candidates whose opportunities and careers may hang in the balance will be judged by a system over which they have no say.

Currently, even corporate behemoths like Amazon have scrapped elaborate AI recruiting systems due to continual issues with gender bias. 

Alternatives to AI recruiting

For companies considering deploying AI in their recruiting toolbox, there should be careful consideration of the tech’s limitations of fairness and accuracy. Human recruiters should be in total control of the company’s AI tools and conduct regular quality checks to make sure that otherwise qualified candidates are not being passed over unfairly.

Another obvious, although much more difficult, the alternative is to improve the speed and accuracy of in-house hiring departments. However, because top talent is so scarce, this may be an impossible task.

Luckily, for businesses that need speed and accuracy, there is another alternative proven to provide satisfactory results with less risk –  outside recruiting firms with expertise in your industry. Working with a recruiting firm frees you from relying too heavily on possibly biased AI solutions. You will receive a curated list of qualified professionals based on your human recruiters’ years of experience. With the help of experienced, industry-specific recruiters like the ones you’ll find at BRIX, you will hire in less time and without risking your ethics or devoting excessive resources into developing an AI-based solution.

AI undoubtedly has the advantage of speed over traditional recruiting and hiring methods. However, humans have tremendous advantages over technology, such as nuance, understanding, and experience. For the foreseeable future, AI is no match for traditional recruiting and will not replace humans’ expertise anytime soon.