Will AI make better hiring decisions than humans?
Unilever is leaving the decision on what candidates to interview for jobs leading to management roles within the company up to artificial intelligence (AI) technology, according to a Wall Street Journal report.
The use of AI means that the consumer products giant is doing away with campus visits and resumes submitted by prospective employees. The new process makes use of algorithms to identify workers that fit Unilever’s criteria for hires. It also allows the company to expand its search beyond the small number of schools where it used to send recruiters.
Unilever uses targeted ads on Facebook and career websites to find candidates. By clicking on the ads, interested individuals are sent to an application form where Unilever pulls information from LinkedIn to populate required fields. Algorithms eliminate more than half of those applying for jobs.
Should candidates pass the initial cut, they are asked to play a group of short online games as part of a skills assessment. The games test candidates’ ability to perform under pressure and assess other skills. Those grading out in the top third submit video interviews to answer questions about situations they may face on the job. This assessment further winnows the field. Those remaining getting an interview with a human being.
The Journal reports that Unilever credits the program with better hiring outcomes. The process moves faster than when it was completely human-driven, and 80 percent of those who make it to the end receive job offers.
Unilever is not the only company turning to AI, and tech startups are popping up to help employers fill jobs. Josh Bersin, principal at Bersin by Deloitte, told Fortune, “I get emails every day from someone who decides they’re going to fix the recruiting market through artificial intelligence.”
The use of AI is also eliminating barriers, such as the lack of a college degree, that used to keep some from finding jobs. Google, for example, has been public about the increasing number of people it hires for skilled positions even though they never went to college.
- In Unilever’s Radical Hiring Experiment, Resumes Are Out, Algorithms Are In – The Wall Street Journal
- How AI Is Changing Your Job Hunt – Fortune
DISCSUSSION QUESTIONS: How do you see artificial intelligence affecting the hiring practices of retailers and consumer packaged goods companies in the years ahead? Do you think using AI will result in better hiring outcomes for employers and employees?