In a world where the workload for Human Resources (HR) professionals has doubled since the onset of the pandemic, there is a growing recognition that Artificial Intelligence (AI) could be the answer to mitigating burnout and enhancing efficiency.

A recent global report by Sage sheds light on the sentiments among HR leaders, indicating a widespread readiness to welcome AI into their workflows.

The report, titled ‘The Changing Face of HR’, surveyed over 1,000 HR leaders globally across various sectors, revealing a resounding 77 percent belief that AI has the potential to revolutionise their company’s ways of working. As the workload for HR professionals continues to escalate, with 95 percent of respondents reporting an increase in tasks over the past year, the appeal of AI becomes increasingly apparent. Particularly in the UK, where HR leaders are grappling with a workload that’s doubled since the pandemic, AI offers a promising solution to alleviate the strain.

Among the key findings of the report:

  • Top Challenges: The report identifies workload volume (80%), low employee morale and burnout (79%), and limited budgets (79%) as the primary concerns keeping HR professionals awake at night.
  • Perceptions on AI: An overwhelming 80 percent of HR professionals anticipate significant changes in their role due to AI, with 71 percent believing that implementing AI will lead to the creation of more jobs.
  • Technology Adoption: The survey highlights a significant shift towards automation and analytics, with 45 percent of HR leaders currently using HR metrics, 44 percent utilising automation, and 43 percent employing cloud HR solutions.
  • Areas of Focus: HR professionals express a desire to allocate more time to strategic planning (61%), data-driven decision-making (59%), and employee engagement (59%), indicating a shift from administrative tasks to people-centric strategies.

What can AI do for HR?

In light of these findings, the report emphasises the crucial role of technology in enabling HR professionals to collect, analyse, and leverage data-driven insights effectively. However, it also underscores the need for adequate training to capitalise fully on AI’s capabilities.

Looking ahead, the report suggests that smaller businesses may benefit from investing in HR technology to remain competitive with larger counterparts. Despite significant progress in automation, there’s still room for improvement, with 79 percent of respondents believing that more HR processes could be automated to enhance efficiency.

Amanda Cusdin, Chief People Officer at Sage, emphasises the importance of embracing technology to alleviate the mounting pressure on HR professionals. She notes that by leveraging AI, HR professionals can reclaim invaluable time, thereby shifting their focus towards more strategic and fulfilling aspects of their roles.

Sarah Holmes, People and Training Manager at Cleveland Group, echoes these sentiments, highlighting the critical role of technology in driving long-term business success. She emphasises the need for real-time analytics to inform strategic decision-making, emphasising the transformative impact technology can have on HR teams.





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.