The landscape for talent acquisition is transforming with the adoption of AI (Artificial Intelligence) in the recruitment process as we move further into the digital age. AI is incorporated into our daily lives, and according to Forbes, 79% of organisations already use automation and/or AI in recruitment and hiring. Keeping up with this trend is going to be key to securing the best talent.

In this blog, we help to explain how AI is currently and could in the future be used in staff recruitment, plus the benefits and challenges of utilising this technology.

Understanding AI in Recruitment

Recruitment activity and its effectiveness can be developed with AI technology. In practice, it is already being used by many organisations to source candidates, assess applications against selection criteria, administer tests and make predictions about applicant success.

“At its most basic, AI is software that mimics and generates human behaviours – planning, generating ideas, understanding speech and visuals. Its ability to scale human intellect will have a profound impact.” Chief AI Officer ­– Deloitte

This means that the technology streamlines and automates various aspects of the recruitment process that would otherwise have been undertaken by hiring managers, recruiters or your HR team. The algorithms allow the AI to quickly process data, which is particularly helpful for high-volume recruitment and, it is argued, could help make better decisions as well as save time.

The Benefits of AI in Recruitment

There are many varied benefits of AI in hiring which include:

  • Reduced Bias – when people make decisions, their unconscious bias can affect their decisions. The use of AI in selection is intended to remove this bias by focusing on data-driven decisions, utilising factual and objective criteria. However, this is dependent upon the quality of the information provided.
  • Recruitment efficiency and speed – automation of tasks removes many of the administrative duties associated with the recruitment process, releasing time for your hiring managers or HR team to focus on more strategic activity. In candidate-scarce markets, the speed of your process (known as time to hire) could make or break your ability to secure candidates. The efficiency gains of utilising AI could put you on the front foot ahead of competitors, ensuring that candidates remain engaged and are less likely to drop out of the process or accept competing offers.
  • Candidate experience – the recruitment process is often the first impression of your organisation, and it matters. The control and efficiency applied via AI will help with consistency of candidate experience, freeing up your people to apply the personal touch.
  • Diversity and inclusion – AI can be used when creating job adverts to ensure that the copy appeals to a diverse audience. By analysing the language used, AI tools can be used in the drafting process to identify and eliminate biases in adverts and briefs, promoting inclusivity. This positions the business as a diverse and inclusive employer, attractive to a broad range of applicants.
  • Scale – for larger organisations or those with high volumes of employee recruitment AI enables scalability without the associated increases in operating costs.

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AI-Powered Recruitment Tools

There are a range of AI-powered tools and technologies used in recruitment, such as:

  1. CV Screening: AI-powered systems can provide automated candidate screening by identifying relevant skills, qualifications, and experience versus the identified requirements.
  2. Candidate Matching: AI algorithms compare candidate applications with the requirements of a job to assess their suitability and identify the best fit for the position. This can also include video analysis powered by AI to evaluate responses, facial expressions and tone of voice to consider communication skills and emotional intelligence.
  3. Chatbots and Virtual Assistants: AI-driven chatbots engage with candidates online to answer their queries/communications and can even be used to conduct first-stage interviews. This provides a more interactive and responsive experience and means that early stages of the process and interactions can proceed without challenges of diary alignment.
  4. Predictive Analytics: AI learns from past experiences and will analyse the data on both successful and unsuccessful hiring outcomes to predict candidate success.
    Enhancing Candidate Experience

Candidate experience is key; according to SHL, 42% of candidates will decline a job offer because of a negative experience in the recruitment process. This leads to reputational damage, wasted time and resources in the recruitment process and operational challenges from the delayed hiring.

AI can be utilised to streamline the process and keep stakeholders informed along the way, demonstrating that you value their time and effort. AI in candidate engagement also provides a consistent standard for each candidate, which will help manage your legal risks during the recruitment process.

Overcoming Challenges and Concerns

Whilst AI can bring huge benefits, there are AI recruitment challenges to be considered and mitigated and for many, there are ethical concerns about its use.

  • Transparency – Organisations should clearly communicate to candidates how AI is used in the hiring process to build trust and help candidates understand how their applications are evaluated.
  • Quality of decisions – The quality of the output from AI is dependent upon the data you feed in, so if you have bad or insufficient data, your AI may not be accurate enough for your recruiting process. For example, an applicant might use a different word to describe a skill. If the AI doesn’t have enough data to realise the skill is transferable, it may miss a qualified candidate. This can be overcome by developing the data set. You should also look back over and review the decisions AI made and ensure that you agree.
  • Understanding of nuance – AI systems struggle to understand nuance in communication, which could lead to misinterpretation of candidate responses, potentially resulting in unfair rejections or unsuitable hires.
  • Bias – although many advocate that AI reduces bias, many studies which are collated in this article from PWC have found that it can in fact incubate it because humans create the algorithms.
  • Lacking a personal touch – While AI chatbots are perfect for consistently answering frequently asked questions, it could be argued that human interaction is still required to create an authentic relationship and connection. Utilising the strengths of both AI and personal interaction will give the best of both worlds.
  • Data privacy – the use of AI in recruitment raises concerns from applicants about the privacy and security of their personal information when it is processed and stored by these systems. Robust investigation of data storage and deletion protocols is required when sourcing tools so that your applicant privacy notice can accurately reflect how data will be collected, processed and stored.

The Future of AI in Recruitment

The future of AI in recruiting employees is exciting. The recruitment technology trends indicate that tools will increase in sophistication and accuracy with solutions becoming increasingly accessible to smaller organisations through subscription services and outsourced partners.

According to the CIPD, one key to success in the future of AI in hiring is to combine both “human and AI into the selection process. Human oversight will give candidates more confidence and trust in the recruitment process and allow human expertise to influence the final selection decision.”

Preparing for AI-Driven Recruitment

When preparing for AI recruitment, work can be done to clearly document your recruitment processes and assess where there are opportunities for automation and where artificial intelligence technology can make a positive impact. What are the time-consuming and resource-heavy stages of the process?

Any investment in technology requires a clear business case so that the return on investment can be assessed and measured. A great place to start is understanding your recruitment performance with metrics such as time to hire, application completion and conversion or hiring success. Looking at your performance and your future needs, you can establish your requirements and find the right tool for your needs.

HR readiness and business readiness for the implementation will be key, so plan to consult and communicate widely about the change and its benefits to each stakeholder.


The landscape of AI recruiting tools is developing quickly and is becoming increasingly used by both internal and outsourced talent acquisition partners, as it has been proven to streamline recruitment activity. If you are considering implementing AI-driven tools, assess your specific needs and identify pain points in your recruitment workflow. Then research tools that can help you address these obstacles and support the achievement of your objectives. There is no one-size-fits-all approach.

HR professionals should explore how they can make use of AI to manage the routine aspects of their recruitment duties to allow them to make more impact with their time in more strategic areas.

Striking the right balance between AI and human involvement is critical to leveraging AI’s benefits while mitigating its limitations.

After all, the impact of each new hire is critical to your success. The investment in your recruitment strategy to secure the best talent could be one that contributes for years to come.

Speak to a member of the MAD-HR team today to see how we can help you recruit your next top talent.