Should Robots Take Over HR?

27th January 2016
Robotic Hand

The HR role is getting bigger as these individuals are tasked with managing everything about their workforce, from compliance to compassion-based tasks. The spotlight is firmly on this profession and the increasing stress levels it is suffering, and it is for this reason that reports of a somewhat odd HR recruitment finding recently piqued our interest. Read on for the story.

Are Robots Better Recruiters than HR?

A controversial study published in the Daily Mail put recruitment firmly in the spotlight. It claimed that robots were better than humans when it came to recruitment, and that candidates picked by algorithms over human intuition, stayed in their jobs for 15% longer.

Bold Claims

Personnel Today reported on this finding, disagreeing with its implications. The publication noted that it was conducted in jobs that had an average employment time per worker of just 99 days. It got us thinking though, when it comes to HR recruitment – how can one not only deal with, but use and thrive on the modernisation and new technologies claiming to threaten this profession? We’ve got some ideas.

What Data Can’t Tell You

For all its wins there is so much that data simply can’t tell you. Candidate presentation, confidence, soft skills, quick thinking and likability all contribute to a successful interview – and it is this face to face contact that can prove vital in making a good decision when recruiting, be this in-house directly through HR, a dedicated recruitment department or through as a hiring manager who has received applications via an HR recruitment agency such as ours.

Cultural Fit

It’s not all about who has what skills either, in fact an increasing part of recruitment involves soft skills and finding the candidate who is the right fit for the company and its ethos. Again, something computer data just can’t give you.

The Human Factor

The human element is also important in recruitment – and in HR. More often than you might think, unsuccessful candidates might be better placed within another role in the company, become more suited to a role in the future and not at the present time, or even become a customer further down the line. Assessing and monitoring all these elements involves a human factor technology is unable to replicate.


We’ve made the arguments for why computers shouldn’t overtake HR as recruiters - but what about a pro?

Big data and new technology solutions now exist for HR, but rather than pose a threat, these are designed to help reduce the stress and improve the reportability for this profession.

Gaining accurate ROI from HR practices is one great way technology can help HR better report to the board as to how their teams are performing and get them the additional resource to deal with their growing role.

To conclude, we’re not convinced already stressed HR professionals should stress themselves even more with fears of HR robots taking their jobs! There’s still ample need for these talented and multi-faceted professionals in the workplace and technology is primed far better to help HR, than to hinder.

"an increasing part of recruitment involves soft skills and finding the candidate who is the right fit for the company and its ethos."