In today’s workplace, advanced artificial intelligence models like OpenAI’s groundbreaking ChatGPT have swiftly become indispensable tools. A survey conducted by Business Insider reveals that 43% of professionals are already leveraging AI tools such as ChatGPT to accomplish their work tasks, with an additional 68% choosing to keep their usage a secret from their employers. This clearly indicates the growing significance of AI, akin to the transformative impact of computers and the internet, as an essential instrument in our professional lives.
MIT predicts that ChatGPT is on the verge of revolutionizing the economy, but it is our collective responsibility to shape its impact. Business leaders across industries play a pivotal role in actively shaping a new narrative that embraces AI for the future of work. Contrary to common concerns, the transformation brought about by AI will not be wholly negative.
To adapt to the evolving workforce, talent acquisition and HR leaders must consider how human capabilities can determine areas where humans excel and where machines should be deployed. Here are three crucial steps leaders can take to ensure that the “great transformation” of 2023 leads to a positive restructuring of the workforce:
Step 1: Redefine the Term “Soft Skills”
As AI’s technical capabilities continue to expand, hard skills that were once highly valued on resumes are now being replicated by AI systems. This shift highlights the importance of human capabilities, often referred to as “soft skills,” which have historically been undervalued. Interpersonal communication and critical thinking are examples of key differentiating skills that indicate how well workers fit into professional roles and cultural frameworks. Research conducted by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) reveals that 89% of new hire failures result from a mismatch in human capabilities, and 97% of employers consider these capabilities equally or more important than technical skills.
To redefine the significance of “soft” skills, companies are developing “skill taxonomies” to objectively classify and understand employee skills. These taxonomies break down broad skills into specific components, enabling effective management and identification of the abilities that contribute to business success.
Step 2: Embrace Automation Mindfully
Amidst the increasing integration of AI, organizations need to map and leverage their human capability data. By combining human capability data with automation, organizations can identify skill patterns, gaps, and areas of expertise within their talent framework. This provides valuable insights for HR and TA professionals, who face the challenge of balancing bottom-line considerations with employee engagement in a competitive labor market.
AI can revolutionize processes by tracking patterns, identifying skill gaps, and enabling strategic recruitment. It can also assist in matching internal talent to open positions and help address individual skill gaps through targeted training. By delegating meticulous tasks to automation, organizations can enhance operational efficiency and boost employee morale. On a cultural level, AI facilitates more standardized evaluation processes, ensuring unbiased assessments of candidates’ capabilities and potential.
Step 3: Adaptation by HR and C-suite Leaders
Integrating non-technical skills into the workplace requires HR and C-suite leaders to move away from traditional evaluation methods. Companies should focus on the attributes of successful employees rather than adhering strictly to rigid job descriptions. Innovations such as machine learning, virtual reality, and augmented reality technologies offer new and inventive ways to evaluate candidates and assess their skills. Additionally, skills assessment and development tools utilize data analytics to identify skill gaps and customize training programs.
By embracing groundbreaking technology and adopting a skills-based approach, organizations can address labor shortages, improve employee retention, and effectively meet the needs of a modern workforce.
Changing the narrative is crucial. Employees who feel their skills are underutilized are more likely to seek new job opportunities. Leveraging human capability data alongside AI empowers organizations to transition to a skills-based business model, acquiring and retaining talent in a more effective and efficient manner.
As we gain a deeper understanding of our talent DNA, we can harness the power of both humans and machines. By leveraging authentic human skills and harmonizing them with automation, organizations can optimize their workforce management and pave the way for a prosperous future of work.