Can tech make the connection?

Simone Lockhart is Director of Strategic Development at Taranata Group

Artificial intelligence and automation are big catchwords in the talent sector just now, but it’s doubtful whether any of us sees, or wishes to see, a day where the battle for talent is purely managed by machines.  That said, there is a lot of process in the recruitment journey that will be taken on by the robots, leaving skilled recruiters to apply their magic.

Robots can’t replicate authentic talent acquisition, as empathy and making a connection are such crucial aspects of engaging the right person for any role.  Just visit the automated checkout in any supermarket, and it will be made crystal clear that electronic empathy is a long way off…

The old-school recruitment model largely involved advertising roles and waiting for candidates to present themselves.  Those days are gone, with specialist recruiters cultivating a rich seam of contacts to tap for increasingly targeted opportunities.  However, an emerging tech-partnered model where AI and automated process will sift mountains of data to actively find potential candidates for the recruiter to engage with is already here, and it will define the recruitment space before we know it – albeit that the potential for automated recruitment processing is still being tested under new data regulations.  The mix of man and machine makes for an ideal synergy, providing businesses with bespoke talent acquisition services that will take their resourcing to a whole new level.

And what positions will the humans and robots be working together to fill?  It’s all too easy to say tech – that’s where the future is!  But that’s exactly why future jobs won’t all be in tech.  STEM is key today, but automation will likely consume many of the jobs we currently think will be created.  Jobs and careers where human skills are a must – creativity, empathy, sharp instinct, building relationships, measured risk taking – these are all soft skills that are hard to automate, and these are the valuable key skills that we’ll be hiring for in the future.  So, it’s important that while on the one hand, we’re building an AI future, we also need nurture soft people skills so that we can take our place within it.