The latest findings from Bersin by Deloitte demonstrate that companies are reporting readiness in people analytics. Those harnessing the power of people-related data to solve business problems rose from 24 percent in 2015 to 32 percent in 2016.
With sophisticated data-driven technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) proliferating rapidly across business disciplines, it’s not surprising that human resources teams are now looking to AI to play an essential role in people strategy and decision-making.


How it works: Predictive meets prescriptive

Artificial intelligence is designed to parse, analyze, and transform data into humanized formats that are easy to digest and act upon. We see this every day in the predictions and suggestions our smart phones push to us without having to be prompted.

With an influx of data in the HR space, AI has the capacity to provide a wealth of insights in areas including talent assessment, employee engagement, manager effectiveness, and team productivity — insights that might otherwise go undiscovered. This helps HR teams better understand and predict workforce trends and problem areas.

More importantly, it can also help solve one of the most important challenges HR teams face today — building and executing plans for improvement — by recommending specific actions to take to solve the biggest problems.


Here’s how it works:

By gathering data including employee engagement levels, performance information, feedback on culture, and insights on why people leave, AI can surface company-and team-specific predictions instantly. These predictions can include the types of employees that will be the most successful, the populations that are most at risk for turnover or performance issues, or the kinds of teams that will develop the most innovative solutions.

AI systems instantly identify patterns and make connections that would be difficult and time-consuming for individuals to uncover. This predictive intelligence allows HR teams to become more proactive and more strategic with their planning and programs.

AI-powered recommendations — or prescriptive intelligence — take predictive intelligence one step further. The system uses historical and trend data, along with best practices and internal learning and development tools, to provide suggestions for the most impactful actions to resolve identified or predicted problems. HR teams gain insight into why certain areas of opportunity are important and receive specific recommendations for taking action to better achieve business goals.


Artificial intelligence as an enhancer of people skills

AI eliminates much of the manual analysis and challenging planning associated with building people programs and provides recommendations based on data rather than gut feelings. As a result, AI is poised to help HR teams and managers make better, less biased decisions and help them take more impactful actions.


The impact of AI-powered actions

Ultimately, the power of data for HR organizations isn’t just in proving return on investment or predicting future outcomes. The real advantage comes when AI leverages people data to translate insights into action.

With the instant, deep insights AI technology provides, HR leaders and managers are better equipped to attract, retain, and inspire great people, which leads to improved business performance for the organization.

AI-powered technologies combined with human experience and insight are key to building today’s effective HR organization. AI has the power to help organizations become even more people-centric — creating happier employees, reducing bias, enabling more valuable programs, and allowing more time to focus on people development.

Data-driven technologies empower HR organizations to achieve a greater impact on business performance. As HR functions become increasingly accountable for influencing business results, harnessing technology that predicts problems and prescribes solutions is the most important step that HR leaders can take to enable stronger business performance.


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