The vast majority of Brits (88%) are happy for Artificial Intelligence to be used in the recruitment process.

However, they draw the line when it comes to human decision-making, according to new research from Totaljobs.

The research, which asked 2,002 UK workers about their thoughts on how AI will impact their working lives, found that nearly three-quarters (72%) believe that full disclosure of how the technology is used in the hiring process should be mandatory.  

The recruitment revolution

When it comes to the initial hiring process, the research indicates that jobseekers are tentatively in favour of the use of conversational AI tools, such as ChatGPT, to create job adverts (38%), tweak job adverts to remove biased language (36%), screen CVs and job applications for a human recruiter to then shortlist candidates (36%) and create interview questions (34%). 4 in 10 (42%) believe that proper and responsible use of AI will ultimately make the recruitment process fairer for applicants.

The research also reveals where people draw the line at having AI involved in their job-seeking journey and how face-to-face interactions are non-negotiable. Most candidates do not think it is acceptable for AI to conduct job interviews (86%) or help with the decision-making process after an interview (84%).

Only one in 10 (14%) would accept an interview conducted by an AI, with three-quarters (66%) of participants worried about AI’s inability to fairly assess a candidates’ wider soft skills.

Plugged in?

Beyond the hiring process there is a clear recognition from UK workers that AI has the potential to revolutionise their everyday tasks within the next 5 years (44%). More than half (54%) agreed that the use of AI will help cut down on manual tasks, 56 percent said it will empower them to learn new skills, and 46 percent said it will enhance their productivity.

However, the research shows there is a disconnect between the enthusiasm for the opportunities that AI offers and everyday adoption in the workplace.Half of UK workers admit they have never used AI and only 21 percent said they feel very comfortable using it. In addition, more than a third (39%) do not have a clear understanding of how AI is applied in their industry.

Workforce 2.0

There are already widespread expectations that employers need to invest more in AI and use it to increase productivity and performance in the workplace (46%). Almost 2 in 5 (38%) say companies that are recognised as leaders in AI technology make for more attractive employers.Younger generations and office workers are generally more excited about the future possibilities and innovations AI will bring to their industry (48% of Gen Z and Millennials vs. 33% Gen X and Baby Boomers, 59 percent of office workers vs. 47% of manual workers).Women are more sceptical of the benefits of AI for their career growth (26% vs. 35% of men), and less comfortable than men in using it (65% men comfortable vs. 44 percent of women).

This scepticism is shared more broadly with 44 percent of people saying AI will increase inequality and biases in the workplace and 46 percent believing AI will eventually replace their roles.

The human touch vs. Artificial Intelligence

Totaljobs’ research shows that whilst workers are enthusiastic about the opportunities that the AI revolution has for personal career development, they are concerned about the long-term implications, such as a lack of human oversight, or their job becoming obsolete.As such, companies looking to implement a successful AI integration need to act transparently and with care. Upskilling employees and educating the workforce on AI’s benefits will be key to smoothen the transition and deliver the vital human input necessary to reassure workers and drive a successful, lasting revolution of the workforce.

Sebastian Dettmers, Global CEO of The StepStone Group comments on the use of Artificial Intelligence:

“Artificial Intelligence has unleashed a revolution across industries, but it is the advent Conversational AI that truly democratises its power, especially in the realm of job searches and recruitment.

“These ground-breaking tools not only streamline repetitive tasks but also open doors for individuals to tap into AI’s vast potential. However, as excitement grows, so does the fear of its being replaced among workers. To counter the great people-shortage, employers must therefore ensure that their people are educated and upskilled to be ready for the future.

“Employers and recruiters must take the lead in addressing concerns about AI. Ensuring transparency and clear communication about how they leverage this technology to enhance the recruitment process is vital, as well as offering existing employees the training and development need to harness this new technology to progress their own careers.”





Amelia Brand is the Editor for HRreview, and host of the HR in Review podcast series. With a Master’s degree in Legal and Political Theory, her particular interests within HR include employment law, DE&I, and wellbeing within the workplace. Prior to working with HRreview, Amelia was Sub-Editor of a magazine, and Editor of the Environmental Justice Project at University College London, writing and overseeing articles into UCL’s weekly newsletter. Her previous academic work has focused on philosophy, politics and law, with a special focus on how artificial intelligence will feature in the future.