AI and HR

By Amanda Newfield, Tom Stuck, and Franco Girimonte
June 27, 2023
Season 4, Episode 24

In this episode of the Business Excelleration® Podcast, how HR organizations can leverage artificial intelligence to drive efficiency and effectiveness within their organizations? A discussion with The Hackett Group North American HR Executive Advisory Practice Leader Franco Girimonte, Senior Director and Executive HR Advisor Amanda Newfield and Director, HR Transformation Tom Stuck.

Welcome to The Hackett Group’s “Business Excelleration Podcast, “where week after week we hear from experts on how to avoid obstacles, manage detours and celebrate milestones on the journey to world-class performance. This episode is hosted by Franco Girimonte, Global HR Executive Advisory Practice leader and principal at The Hackett Group. Today’s episode will discuss how human resources (HR) can leverage artificial intelligence (AI) to drive efficiency and effectiveness within their organizations. He is joined by Amanda Newfield, senior director and executive within The Hackett Group’s Advisory HR practice, and Tom Stuck, manager in The Hackett Group’s HR Transformation practice.

This episode is the first of the series on AI and chatbot. To begin, Amanda defines AI and shares how it is applicable to HR. AI is a collection of intelligent computer programs that help us understand humans and gain knowledge based on data. It helps to drive quicker access and insights to make decisions based on all of the data points collected throughout the day in various areas. While AI used to be highly information technology driven, it has now become accessible for the masses. Then, Tom explains that AI has become such a hot topic because it drives efficiency and automation while offering improved decision-making and the enhancing of the employee experience. It adds to performance development, learning and room for growth.

Next, Amanda explains how HR can leverage AI in traditional areas. Talent acquisition, for example, is an incredibly complex function within HR. AI has enabled recruiters to look at enhanced ways to screen candidates, evaluate resumes and get to the early stages of a selection process faster to move candidates to the interview stage to offer and hire much quicker than they could in the past. AI is being utilized to evaluate the workforce and understand the skills available. AI has also been very successful in driving down errors in payroll processing. Finally, AI helps with HR data governance by ensuring the data is consistent, secure and that people are following the governance rules. HR has largely had trouble understanding the skills needed for the job in comparison to the skills of the employees within the workforce. Generative AI has the power to alleviate that stress from HR.

There are currently prebuilt AI engines on the marketplace today that organizations can purchase and begin to leverage immediately. Systems like Workday and Oracle have been highly invested in analyzing employee skills, automating chat capabilities, evaluating candidate fit, and managing HR governance. Applications like Fuel50 are heavily invested in quantifying and identifying the skills within the organization and workforce. We are also beginning to see AI embedded into the normal productivity suites from companies like Microsoft. Before wrapping up, Tom unpacks some of the requirements companies should consider before leveraging AI in their operations. Technology can be a great enabler, but without the right structures in place, it can be an accelerant of bad design, too. In order to avoid this, companies should take a step back and analyze their entire operating model of HR first. From there, they can look at the HR service catalog to be sure AI has a place.

Time stamps:

  • 0:48 – Welcome to this episode hosted by Franco Girimonte. 
  • 2:07 – What is AI?
  • 3:48 – Why is AI such a hot topic right now?
  • 5:45 – How clients can leverage AI in their regular operations.
  • 11:13 – AI in performance management and onboarding.
  • 12:06 – Prebuilt AI engines on the marketplace today.
  • 16:25 – The requirements for organizations to consider before implementing AI.