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Recruitment agencies both utilise and fear generative AI

Weighing out the pros and cons of AI is always a tech-y subject. While the technology could, on one hand, help brands and ad agencies more efficiently target their job searches, many are worried that it could also replace the role of job recruiters themselves. 

It must be noted that the use of AI within the recruitment field is no new thing. For over two decades, recruiters have used so-called machine-learning AI, primarily in the form of software that uses job descriptions to automatically filter applicant pools. The advent of generative AI, however, will turbocharge their ability to find the best candidates for a given job, recruiters contend.

The most immediate use for tools like ChatGPT and Google’s Bard lies in automating portions of repetitive tasks: writing direct messages to candidates and creating outlines for job listings. In both cases, AI-generated content can then be tailored by humans to better describe the sort of highly specialised and tech-focused roles that are increasingly sought by marketers.

One huge advantage of AI is its ability to soften language barriers. Marketers frequently pursue international candidates for top creative roles. For them, generative AI can summarise the complex legal documents required to navigate U.S. immigration law, as well as help recruiters more fluently communicate with these candidates.

Generative AI’s most compelling use for marketing recruiters, however, may lie in its ability to streamline processes such as the creation of so-called Boolean strings, which are a series of “if, then, and” prompts used to more accurately target candidates. Recruiters can also tap AI to pluck a certain group of keywords from an existing job description, using those terms to create a new string and further refine the search results.

According to several recruitment firms, many executive recruiters haven’t yet fully embraced AI, but face pressure from competitors who have. All that automation ironically means recruiters are getting a taste of the anxiety over job security that some marketing professionals already feel. That worry echoes the scare over the rise of online job forums and platforms like LinkedIn two decades ago.
Many believe that these fears are likely unfounded seeing that recruiting ultimately relies on human-to-human interaction. As AI grows more popular and, in turn, more commoditized, its competitive advantages for recruiters will fall away as the ubiquity of phrases like “AI-powered” render them all but meaningless. 

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