A recent study titled ‘SuperHuman: AI adoption shaping the future of HR,’ conducted by Employment Hero, a cloud HR and payroll platform, sheds light on the critical skills gap faced by HR leaders in Britain to become AI-ready.
The research reveals that HR leaders must prioritise data analysis (36%), soft skills (31%), and ethical and responsible AI use (26%) to successfully adopt artificial intelligence in their operations.
The survey, which included 301 British HR leaders, highlights the numerous advantages of AI adoption in the field. Notably, better HR analytics, increased operational efficiency, and streamlined HR processes were cited as the most significant benefits of AI implementation.
The findings show that 85 percent of HR professionals are already utilising AI in various capacities in their day-to-day activities, with 64 percent experiencing time-saving benefits and increased job ease.
Moreover, over half (55%) of HR leaders expect to increase their use of AI tools in the future, while 15 percent anticipate a substantial increase in AI utilisation within their roles.
What challenges does AI bring?
While AI brings undeniable benefits, it also poses challenges, especially in maintaining critical thinking and managing business risks. The study emphasises the growing importance of soft skills for HR leaders as reliance on AI tools increases. This need for a balance between AI integration and human-driven decision-making is crucial to ensuring effective AI utilisation in HR practices.
Charlotte Boffey, Head of UK Services at Employment Hero, shared her insights on the findings, stating, “HR leaders recognise the potential of AI tools in data analysis and strategy. However, they also acknowledge the importance of emphasising the human aspect of HR practices by prioritising soft skills and ethical AI usage.”
The ever-evolving AI landscape demands constant learning and effective communication within HR teams and across the organisation. Employee concerns regarding AI usage can be alleviated through transparent communication, preparedness with Q&As, and ensuring an open dialogue.
To embrace and harness the full potential of AI tools effectively, HR leaders are advised to:
- Explore AI-powered tools: Consider adopting AI-powered solutions for content creation and data analysis to streamline tasks and gain valuable insights.
- Focus on analytics and insights: Invest in developing data analysis and HR analytics skills within the HR teams to leverage AI-powered analytics tools for strategic HR initiatives.
- Stay informed about AI-driven recruitment tools: Keep abreast of the latest AI advancements for recruitment tasks while ensuring that employee engagement and personal growth initiatives remain human-centric.
- Invest in soft skills development: Prioritise the cultivation of communication, critical thinking, and empathy skills, which will play a crucial role in leveraging AI and mitigating potential risks.
- Address concerns proactively: Acknowledge and tackle any concerns about AI implementation by fostering open discussions and providing information on the benefits and limitations of AI in HR. Emphasise ethical AI use and stay updated on relevant regulations and industry standards.
As AI continues to reshape the HR landscape, British HR leaders must equip themselves with the necessary skills and mindset to lead the charge and ensure a harmonious integration of AI technology with human-centric HR practices.
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 the 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.