The cost and time savings that AI can offer is significant, however, employers need to be aware of potential teething problems. AI recruitment tools could hold some risks regarding the candidate’s right to privacy. With the new GDPR laws coming in to play from 25 May 2018, the reputational cost of GDPR failures can be even more significant for companies.
The GDPR requires companies to provide clear and transparent information about any actions taken which involve the personal data of “data subjects” (eg. employees and applicants), including profiling.
It is unlikely that, at the point of collection, the use of CV data (in combination with other sources such as AI) will have been anticipated by previous candidates. If you propose to use an AI recruitment tool which profiles candidate CV’s, you should either ensure that applicants are informed about the likely uses of AI in relation to their CV’s, or consider whether all of the CV data inputted into AI systems is (or can be) completely anonymised.
The GDPR also requires employers to provide candidates with ‘meaningful information about the rules involved’ in profiling and any automated decision-making, as well as the consequences of this for the candidate. For example, if the computer identifies that someone does not have a university degree; will they automatically be told that their application has been unsuccessful?
Giving consent needs to be a proper process as it can be a grey area to both employers and candidates alike. A route that is likely to be more compliant is for employers to introduce ‘meaningful human intervention’, for example by having a recruitment consultant or HR manager check the result of an automated decision before applying it to a specific applicant.
So, in a nutshell – will AI be worth it? If steps are taken to ensure compliance with applicable requirements, then yes. AI recruitment tools are the future. Taking the time to avoid the potential privacy pitfalls is a small price to pay for the better outcomes and significant cost and time savings for your business.