Are you curious about ? Interested in Artificial intelligence?
If you want to find out more about and its impact on the future of work and recruitment, check out our below latest research.
Learn more about the future of work and recruitment from our industry experts, along with insights on technology and its limitations, and how technology will help us be more productive and help shape our roles.
There’s been a lot of noise about ChatGPT since it was made available to the public for free in November 2022. What sets it apart from other AI models – according to ChatGPT itself – is its ability to understand context and generate responses that are relevant to the conversation in a human-like way. In other words, it can ‘think.’ It can create new content and ideas, and even write essays, scripts and poems. In fact, some of the leading names in tech recently penned an open letter calling for a six month pause on AI experiments, stating "Contemporary AI systems are now becoming human-competitive at general tasks."
Not surprisingly, skilled professionals, from content creators to SEO specialists, are feeling vulnerable. And the latest version, GPT-4, which launched in March 2023, looks set to make everyone from web developers to lawyers nervous too. In fact, automation will impact all workers across all sectors, with one in four jobs at risk. Forrester predicts that, by 2030 1.5million jobs will be lost in Australia, and by 2040, 12 million jobs will be lost in France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the UK. In the US, 39 million people could lose their jobs by 2030.
So, is it time for us humans to submit to our machine overlords? Definitely not yet.
At Impellam Group, our approach is human first, augmented by technology. It’s important to utilize advantageous technology. For example, we’ve invested in a digital process automation platform, to take care of our more repetitive tasks so our employees (we call them Virtuosos, because they make the difference) can focus on higher value ones like building relationships with our customers and candidates. In one instance, a Virtuoso was spending 80% of their time answering supplier emails. By automating responses to common queries, we’ve reduced this to 90 minutes a week. Pamela Beard, SVP Technology & Project Management, Guidant Global, says: “People find no pleasure in a lot of repetitive work. By using the process automation platform, we’re making the lives of our fellow team members better and their jobs more interesting.”
We’re also embracing automation and personalisation so we can provide a more responsive and engaging experience for candidates. Alexa Bradbury, Global Marketing Director, Guidant Global, explains that we use chatbots in high-volume recruitment programmes to bring efficiencies to first-round screening – for example, by filtering out those without a right to work and self-enabling administrative tasks such as interview scheduling. When it comes to saving time and money, the stats speak for themselves. The latest recruitment technology allows advanced automation and personalisation at scale, resulting in an average of 12% more placements per recruiter, 34% more submissions per head, and 8.5 days less time to fill. More importantly, recruiters are using this time to focus on developing relationships with the most qualified candidates, resulting in 64% higher fill rates and a 21% increase in redeployment.
As well as enabling more time to be spent with candidates, AI can also improve the overall candidate experience. Darren Topping, Director of Solutions and Insight for Lorien UK commented, “Our research into a positive candidate journey has shown that the right technology will benefit candidates as well as our clients. Things like real-time status updates of application progress, enabling applications to be created quickly and allowing candidates to rate their recruitment experience through various stages of the project can be achieved using AI and provide us with valuable data that will help us measure candidate satisfaction.”
But technology has its limitations. Charlotte Horton, Head of Innovation and Insight, Impellam Group, says: “We’ve not seen a technology that can replace the emotional engagement that our people have with our customers and candidates. We buy services from people we like and people we trust; we can’t (and don’t want to) replace that.”
Ryan McMahon, President, Lorien, agrees. He’s been here before. The online job boards were going to be the end of recruiters; except they weren’t and we’re still here. He says: “People want to communicate with people – especially about a job, something you spend 40 hours a week doing.”
Technology is an enabler, but it can’t form relationships. It can’t listen, or question, or gather insight. It can’t engage with customers to understand their problems and come up with a solution that best suits their needs. What AI can do is manage high volumes of work and at pace. It can automate tasks such as building resumes and creating job offers. It can make us more productive in carrying out these tasks, or it can free us up to use our human skills to focus on more rewarding work.
Of course, a number of current jobs in today’s market could be described as repetitive – more than a third of them ‘involve little complex thinking, judgment, or human interaction’ –. According to McKinsey, up to 21 million people in Europe and 5 million in Australia may have to leave declining occupations. And in the US, nearly 40% of jobs are in occupations that could shrink by 2030. Even if your job is safe, you can expect your day-to-day activities to change. McKinsey’s 2017 analysis of occupations found that, in 60% of jobs, at least 30% of activities could be automated.
But to suppose that technology is coming for our jobs misses an important point: by 2030, Europe will have 20 million fewer people of working age. Not only that, the World Economic Forum predict there will be 150 million new technology jobs created over the next five years, and by 2030 77% of roles will require digital skills. Charlotte explains: “Ultimately, there aren’t enough people in the workforce with the right skills to do the work. The robots aren’t replacing humans; they’re helping us to work smarter and do more.”
So, fear not, with the right investment in both technology and people, robots can help us create a world of work that is more productive and rewarding than ever before. At Impellam we make sure people make the difference. Together, we can deliver a world where you’ll always have exceptional people doing exceptional work.
ChatGPT is just one of the many tools impacting how we live and work…
The metaverse will be a gamechanger
The potential is unlimited. Literally. The metaverse will allow us to be in two (or more) places at once: to pursue an alternate career in an alternate reality, selling skills augmented by AI. In the metaverse, an avatar can produce and sell content while the real-life person sleeps. If it sounds out of this world, that’s because it is, but it has practical applications for business in a world where we’re beginning to embrace the global marketplace – and it could be the solution for remote working.
Technology will accelerate change – and bring new challenges for people to solve
AI needs data centres and data centres need renewable energy – and they both need people to design, build, manage and maintain them. Ryan expects to see these sectors expand, alongside cyber security, as Lorien, our digital, transformation and technology recruitment brand, staffs the next generation of AI technology. In fact, worldwide employment in renewable energy is set to grow by more than 38 million jobs by 2030.
And it’s not only STEM skills that will be in demand either. Social and emotional skills such as entrepreneurship, initiative taking and leadership, and higher cognitive skills including creativity and critical thinking, will also be sought after.
Opening up world(s) of talent and breaking down job definitions
Remote working has already opened up a world of talent, and new digital tools are helping to remove bias from the recruitment process and increase access to opportunity. Add the metaverse to the mix and what do you get? That means 24/7 access to worlds of talent – a supersized gig economy that augments your core workforce. As organisations automate or outsource more tasks, we’ll see less defined job roles and lots of appetite for skills mapping. Talent will flow to work, enabling people to focus on their expertise – and technology will play a role in helping organisations to understand employees’ skill sets and behaviours and how to utilise them.
AI ain’t all that…
Technology is only as good as the humans behind it – not to mention the humans using it too. AI draws its data from content produced by people, which means it’s as flawed as those who created it. It might be misinformed, or biased, or both, and it requires human intervention to lead it in the right direction. As a research tool, ChatGPT is helping people to generate content in a more efficient way. Alexa explains: “It helps our writers to do their research into the market quickly, but it’s definitely not a silver bullet. It’s a content aggregator, not original thought: we need to sense check it, make sure it’s fit for purpose and put our own stamp on it.”
… but it will become essential for engagement
Digital natives embrace new technologies, and as more of them enter the workforce, they’ll bring this acceptance – and expectation – with them. Employers competing for talent will need to engage with these people who’ve grown up online – and AI will enable organisations to keep up with demand for content.