How To Use Virtual Reality and AI In Recruitment: Part 2
How Can Artificial Intelligence Transform Your Hiring Process?
In Part 1 we explored how immersive reality technologies - those which allow the user to engage with and experience a virtual world - are emerging as major disruptors in the socially-distanced world of training and recruitment.
In this post we’re going to take a look at the game-changing potential of the very same technologies - coupled with cutting-edge artificial intelligence - when it comes to informed and bias-free hiring.
Using immersive technology in the hiring process
After the job applications have landed in the HR inbox, the challenge of looking past the CV to assess those really important personal and professional qualities must begin.
The traditional assessment centre model is on its way out, and hot on its heels come remote skill evaluations, accessed by candidates on virtual reality platforms. Gone are the expensive and time-consuming group challenges and individual tests, with their need for travel and in-person interaction (and which are, in fact notoriously poor indicators of candidate suitability). In 2020 and beyond, top employers are embracing ‘e-assessment’.
To give an example; a company may choose to design their very own challenge scenario for their potential recruits to engage with using their smartphones. The exercise would involve the navigation of a virtual environment - say, a sales showroom - interaction with digitised ‘customers’, and the manipulation of virtual ‘products’. The scenario would test not only working knowledge of the specific industry, but also ability to synthesise information, communicate effectively, and make fast, accurate decisions.
It’s certainly worth acknowledging that money-saving opportunities are also an attractive reason to explore virtual recruitment options, and that the scalable, low-input nature of the technology stands to benefit rapidly-scaling organisations.
We know that even the most highly trained humans can be inconsistent and unpredictable in their judgements of other people. But by introducing artificial intelligence tools to the hiring process, we needn’t ‘work around’ this problem any longer! It’s now possible to embed AI into VR and AR platforms, and to use it to gather and analyse a plethora of meaningful data.
For example, in a virtual reality enabled job interview, the candidate would use the platform to ‘enter’ a meeting room, where the interviewer (or even a computer avatar) would ask their usual questions. In moments, the AI algorithm could analyse every vocal intonation, subconscious body language and verbal utterance in order to evaluate the candidate on any number of metrics - from ease of communication to thought processing speed. Scores could be produced in parallel to performance scores from previous challenges designed to assess physical dexterity or verbal reasoning capacities, and used to underpin the final decision making process.
When AI data and algorithms are used to provide objective assessments of candidate ability, there is no interference from unconscious bias. Unconscious biases are a side effect of the human brain’s propensity to categorise the world, and they can be defined as “learned stereotypes that are automatic, unintentional, deeply ingrained, universal, and able to influence behavior”.
Although they are likely to have had an evolutionary benefit for humans, they are problematic in the hiring process. That ‘gut feeling’ which makes up the mind of the hiring manager is often driven by a subconscious affiliation with an aspect of the candidate’s profile, appearance, accent or background, and thus results in a lack of workplace diversity. Eliminating unconscious biases is almost impossible, unless of course, you use a non-human intelligent technology to shortlist appropriate candidates.
A company leading the way in tech-enabled blind recruitment is Accenture, who are successfully using artificial intelligence alongside both AR and VR technology to advance their diverse and meritocratic hiring agenda. Their new standard practice includes assessments which remotely immerse candidates in a business task in order to elicit genuine behavioural responses.
How is Virti positioned to help businesses make the transition?
In order to successfully leverage the potential of immersive technologies, it’s essential to collaborate with companies, such as Virti, that are positioned at the forefront of research and innovation in the industry.
Thanks to our extensive experience in creating and delivering effective training and education via our bespoke platform, we are perfectly placed to support HR departments with designing and implementing their new recruitment technology.
With the help of our designers and consultants, employers can create and upload tasks and scenario-based assessments onto the Virti platform, which prospective candidates can then access via any smart device or VR headset. Detailed feedback on candidate performance collected via inbuilt AI technology is fed back to the organisation, informing smarter, bias-free hiring decisions.
If your business is ready to adopt immersive reality technology as a powerful, value-adding candidate assessment tool and you’d like to find out how we can help you to drive success, reach out to a member of the Virti team today for a free diagnostic.