Rapid advances in technology and changing workforce dynamics are transforming HR’s role within the organization. What was once an administrative function is now becoming more strategic and growth-focused. One of the key drivers of this change has been the emergence of data analytics and artificial intelligence (AI).
While HR transformation started in the late ‘90s, the pace of adoption has significantly increased over the past few years. As a business function that has historically been the custodian of organizational data, HR has only recently realized the promise of this data. Not known for being a pioneer of new technologies, HR has struggled to demonstrate the business impact of technology investments. But AI is changing that.
5 Ways AI will Drive HR Transformation in 2020 and Beyond
As we head into 2020, it’s useful to understand how AI will transform HR practices:
1. Data will Drive Decision-Making: AI will make HR much more data-driven, from strategy to operations, HR will rely on cold, hard, data to guide its decisions supported by key performance indicators (KPIs). AI is helping HR link its initiatives to business outcomes and making it easier to understand the organisation and its behaviour. As AI adoption increases, HR professionals will rely on data to execute day-to-day activities like recruitment and compensation planning. In many organisations, HR is already reaping the benefits of data-driven decision-making in terms of higher quality of talent, improved productivity, and significant cost savings. Without emotional judgement and prejudices cloud decision-making, HR as a function will become more effective in delivering business value. And when outcomes can be measured, processes can be optimized. It all starts with data.
2. AI will Humanize HR: What do HR professionals spend most of their time doing? In a typical organisation, HR professionals are burdened with time-consuming administrative tasks. AI will help free up more time for HR professionals by automating repetitive, administrative tasks like creating reports and data entry. With more free time on their hands, HR professionals can focus on the more strategic areas of talent management like employee engagement and performance improvement. HR professionals will play an active role in building a high-performance culture and building employee trust.
3. HR will Become the Organisation’s Innovation Engine: Building on the previous point, as AI takes over most repetitive HR tasks, professionals will have the opportunity to create business value through innovation. In order to retain their economic value, HR professionals will need to develop new skills and abilities such as critical thinking, problem-solving, and foster creativity to imagine new processes, create better workflows, and perfect the science of building great relationships. Additionally, AI can help HR solve critical business challenges and drive exponential performance improvements.
4. AI will Improve Customer Experience: As AI enables organisations to become more employee-centric, better customer experience follows. A study published in the Journal of Occupational and Organisational Psychology established a direct correlation between organisational commitment and business unit performance. Engaged employees take ownership of their work, are passionate about customers, and are more likely to deliver on commitments both internally and externally, making for a great customer experience. As AI helps employees work better, i.e., collaborate seamlessly, learn faster, and experience intuitive self-service features, they become more invested in the organisation’s success.
5. Will Deliver Personalisation at Scale: Thanks to the proliferation of smart technologies in our consumer lives, we’ve come to expect more from technology in the workplace. AI helps organisations deliver the same level of personalization and ease-of-use to employees as they experience in their personal lives. Imagine if you had a Google for your organisation’s resource library – a search engine that uses predictive typing and indexes most common searches. AI-powered learning management systems (LMS) and onboarding solutions can do that. In fact, AI can help organisations deliver personalization at scale by leveraging massive volumes of user data to create unique experiences for employees.
There is little doubt that AI and HR transformation go hand in hand. And as we get closer to 2020, it’s impact will only become more pronounced. AI and HR transformation have a symbiotic relationship – transformation requires new structures, processes, and most importantly, a change of mindset, and AI brings all of that to the table.
With these parts in place, AI can help the HR function thrive in an era of constant disruption by uncovering new insights, creating personalized experiences and driving bottom line impact.