The HR Skills you will need in the age of AI

Editor's Comments: HR is in the midst of enormous change. The depth and breath of skills required to be successful in an HR role is evolving at an unprecedented rate. Today, facts and data are required to make strategic workforce decisions and intuition plays a less important role. Technology is playing a key role in all areas of HR. Are you ready for the future?


In a recent TLNT article on the dawning age of AI and automation, TLNT Editor John Zappe states,

As an HR leader you need to start thinking about the potential impact (because) human resource professionals are directly accountable for the well-being of the organization and the individuals in it.

Research predicts up to 47% of US jobs will be automated with the next 20 years. The large scale adoption of AI and automation will require a significant amount of employee re-skilling. HR won’t be exempt from this reskilling requirement in order to adapt to the new workplace.

As technology continues to automate the administrative burden of HR, two important skillsets are emerging: one focused on people and one focused on data.

This is what the new HR skill-set will look like in the age of AI and automation.

People-focused skills

As work becomes more efficient, data-driven, and automated by AI and technology, HR will be relied on more than ever to humanize the workplace. Even with today’s technology, we still want to talk to another person when it comes to hiring and managing people and that desire for the human touch is likely not going away soon.

According to Accenture’s report on Creating The Future Workforce, people-focused skills such as creativity, critical thinking and empathy will be at a premium. It cites the World Economic Forum’s prediction that by 2020, the demand for complex problem solving skills will increase by 40%.

This people-focused skillset will be required to accomplish two major HR challenges: employee reskilling and talent advising.

Employee reskilling

As work tasks become increasingly automated, the need to “level up” employees will rise correspondingly.

When AT&T’s internal research found only 50% of their staff had training in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) and the projected need for employees with STEM training was 95% by 2020, they decided to invest more than a billion dollars into new programs and facilities for employee re-education.

People-focused HR professionals will be needed to guide employees through the reskilling process by nurturing a workplace culture that empowers and motivates their employees to learn and develop professionally.

Day-to-day responsibilities for employee reskilling include selecting online learning modules such as MOOCs (i.e., massive open online courses), personalizing training for different learning styles, identifying developmental opportunities to practice and implement new skills, and providing real-time and actionable feedback.

Talent advising

In his SourceCon article, Rob McIntosh calls the talent acquisition leader of the future a talent advisor:

…a trusted recruiting partner to the business who consistently delivers the best candidates in support of the business mission while continually improving the hiring process and candidate experience.

Among the critical competencies of a talent advisor are solving recruiting problems through creativity, using business acumen to get you better outcomes, and influencing hiring managers and candidates.

A major benefit of automation is freeing up HR’s time. People-focused talent advisors will be able to better use their time on initiatives such as reducing bias in hiring, analyzing the ROI of their recruiting software tools and practices, and planning strategic initiatives for proactive hiring based on future growth and revenue.

Read the whole article...

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