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How Companies Can Use Artificial Intelligence to Have a Human Impact With Workers

When you think of how human resource departments use computers, databases and administrative software likely are the first things that spring to mind. But increasingly, artificial intelligence has begun powering a range of next-level smarts in the back end, transforming HR from a reactionary field to a strategic initiative that can fuel corporate innovation.

Deb Bubb, IBM’s vice president of human resources, sits at the leading edge of this evolving effort. “We’re no longer a response to the business strategy of the company,” she says. “We’re actively at the table driving strategy, so that we can help the company compete where it needs to be.”

IBM is deploying A.I. in a variety of ways for its HR department, including measuring employee sentiment, increasing engagement, enhancing employee education, and acquiring new, diverse talent.

“We’re using artificial intelligence to curate the right kinds of interest, to make the right kinds of relationships with talent pools,” Bubb says. The company is also using A.I. to customize and design job requisitions, she adds.

The end goal isn’t to make HR less human, but rather to make it more so. The world is a diverse place, and having inclusive hiring policies can make companies more representative of the customers they ultimately serve. And with thoughtfully programmed A.I., companies can get there faster. “We’re using the best of behavior science and the best of data science to make better decisions and more inclusive environments,” Bubb says.

For more from on IBM’s A.I.-driven HR initiative, watch the interview above.