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Weighing in on the pros and cons of AI in HR recruitment

Weighing in on the pros and cons of AI in HR recruitment

If you have dismissed artificial intelligence (AI) in the past, it is now time to take it seriously. Believe it or not, most of us spend our day interacting with at least one AI. An AI can appear in many forms, integrated in a number of industries, offering services and assistance to us in many ways to streamline our businesses and optimize our lives.

An obvious example is the interactions we have with Google’s Assistant, Apple’s Siri or Samsung’s Bixby when we ask for directions, information or virtual assistance. Other simple but rather useful function is how apps such as Spotify and Netflix utilise AI to recommend music and movies based on users’ previous preferences.

AI is revolutionizing how businesses work and it has now entered into the recruitment space. Just like any other industry, HR is said to be transformed by the power of AI. AI is said to have significant impact on HR recruitment, replacing many traditional human tasks that are mundane and time-consuming. Although it may be a little too early to sound the alarm, AI in HR is definitely gaining its momentum.

Some of the recent AIs that have been used to enhance recruitment in HR are chatbots such as Olivia, data-driven video interview platforms such as Paññã, and smart tools that can help to write the perfect job ads such as Textio.

Let us take a look at some of the pros and cons of AI in HR recruitment:


1. Reduce human biasness

Humans tend to be biased in some ways. Whether they realised it or not, some recruiters may make hiring decisions based on gender, ethnicity, age, looks and so on. An AI on the other hand, can be programmed to focus only on important factors such as candidates’ personality, skills, experience and qualifications.

2. Saves time, money and increase in efficiency

One of the main challenges for HR recruiters is to identify the best talent out of the many applications they receive each day. AIs can help to eliminate these manual tasks as they are programmed to obtain maximum efficiency in terms of time, costs and quality. Once the process of selecting candidates are fully automated, more data can then be gathered and efficiently assessed.

3. Improve candidate experience and engagement

HR recruiters are often inundated with tasks that take up most of their time, hence many face difficulties in maintaining good response time with their candidates, resulting in poor candidate experience and engagement. By introducing chatbots and virtual assistants, candidates will experience better interaction and response time, keeping them engaged and posted throughout the whole recruitment process.


1. Issues with accuracy and reliability

Although AI has come a long way, it is still far from being considered perfect. One of the major faults of applicant tracking system is that it lacks accuracy and reliability as it can easily be confused by formatting options. For example, an applicant might have all the good qualities that a recruiter seeks, but still fail to qualify into the AI’s list due to some unorthodox style of bullet points used in the application or resume.

2. Too much dependency on certain keywords

AI depends very much on certain keywords to scan through their pile of candidates. This can become a loophole for candidates who are familiar with how the system in AI is programmed, where they may include certain keywords that have the potential to trick the system and camouflage them as good fits for various positions, even though they are not.

3. Lacks nuance of human judgement

If a company is looking to diversify its workforce, using an AI in its hiring process may not be the best option. There are candidates out there who have atypical work experience but may still be the best fit for the position based on his or her personality, personal interests, character and work ethics. These are factors that require human judgement. Using an AI in this sense can greatly reduce the diversity in a workforce.

Automating the recruitment process in HR will save time, and consequently money as well as allowing recruiters to concentrate on other important tasks. Some of the disadvantages in implementing AI in HR recruitment are there for now, but eventually these problems will be solved just like any other challenges prior to them. More importantly, with the implementation of AI in every aspect of our lives, it is only a matter of time before it becomes mainstream even in HR recruitment.

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