I read an article recently that said consumer-goods giant Unilever has been hiring entry-level team members using brain games and artificial intelligence. Wait a minute … hear me out.
Rather than head to universities to collect resumes and in-person interviews, Unilever has turned to technology —that is, after all, where the workforce is today. Candidates first learn about job opportunities via platforms like LinkedIn, where they can submit their profile (rather than their resume) for review. From there, they spend about 20 minutes playing 12 neuroscience-based games and, if their results match the requirements for the position, they move on to the next step.
That next step? A virtual interview via HireVue, where they video record answers to predetermined questions. The technology then analyzes things like keywords, speech pitch and body language and makes notes for the hiring manager. If the candidate makes it through these steps, they’re invited to Unilever for a day-in-the-life experience —they’ll know if they have the job by the end of the day.
Unilever isn’t the only company testing this out. Estee Lauder is using new video technologies to “open up the funnel of candidates and leverage technology to screen them, so that human interactions happen at the right time.” They’ll hire 30,000 beauty advisors in the next year alone, so it’s easy to see why they’d want to streamline the hiring process.
Some wonder, however, if human biases extend to artificial intelligence. A panelist at Innovation Congress reminds us … “someone had to program that algorithm.” This is what’s happening to everything we do today and it’s pretty creepy.
AI isn’t the only technology transforming HR
Another interesting read … Gamifying the Recruitment Process by HR Technologist. I’ve actually written about gamification before. In case you missed it, here are four things I learned about gamification in the men’s bathroom.
While gamification isn’t a new thing in the business world (it’s been used in the educational aspects of business for years), the HR Technologist article suggests that we’re seeing it more and more in the talent acquisition arena because, well … people find games interesting and fun. When used properly, gamification can be used to better assess candidates’ skills and can vastly improve the onboarding process.
Is this how the next generation of the workforce will be hired?
While I’m all about utilizing technology to make processes more streamlined and businesses more efficient, we must always remember the human element. Unilever is still embracing the human element by having the candidate reviewed by a hiring manager and by inviting them to the campus for a day-in-the-life. But I wonder —when you exclude the human element from the very early stages of the search process— how accurate and effective the hiring process can be? And, what do the candidates think about using so much tech in the hiring process?
A quick search and I learned that according to data, while most candidates find value in technology, they are frustrated when it supersedes the human aspect of the process. In fact, 82 percent of respondents agree they are often frustrated with an overly automated job search experience.
It will be interesting to watch where this technology trend goes and, as it becomes more widely used, how successful the placement the candidate within the company truly is.