June’s jobs report showed promise. Employers added 4.8 million jobs, and the jobless rate fell to 11.1%, indicating the labor market is cautiously shifting course.
Promise aside, candidates should still expect stiff competition as they reenter the now employer-driven job market. A higher unemployment rate translates to an abundance of candidates and fewer available jobs. Many employers now looking to rehire want to increase the quality of the workforce with fewer recruiters. This requires new tools and innovative strategies. That’s why many recruiters are turning to artificial intelligence to help assess their growing number of applicants. AI can play a major role in the virtual hiring process, from AI scheduling assistants to prehire candidate assessments to employee onboarding automation software.
If delivered and adopted responsibly, AI can be a solution that can work in job seekers’ favor. Yet despite the improved experience and outcomes, you’ll need to prepare for an AI-assisted interview a little differently.
Do your research
Some AI tools, especially facial recognition apps, violate privacy laws. Clearview AI, for example, was recently sued for allowing thousands of companies including Walmart, Bank of America, and Macy’s to collect and store biometric data without consent. Other companies have taken a moral position on the use of such technology in response to recent calls for racial justice. IBM announced it will no longer provide, develop, or research facial recognition software in an effort to curtail mass surveillance, racial profiling, and violations of basic human rights. Look up the legislation on AI in your state, and don’t be afraid to ask companies you’re interviewing with if they have a stance on using AI ethically. Consider if you’d want to work for an organization that isn’t transparent about how it uses technology.
Brush up on your soft skills
While some skills needed will depend on the industry and role you’re applying for, there are a handful of soft skills that will better equip you for the future workplace. As remote work becomes more common, employers are looking for individuals that can handle their work autonomously—self-starters that are independently motivated, capable of holding themselves accountable, and savvy with digital collaboration tools. When it comes to in-person roles, self-motivation is still key, as well as conscientiousness—a trait AI-powered candidate assessments look for to ensure employees will follow health and safety rules.
Share your experiences, not your résumé
Résumés have become superfluous across many industries. Since they’re self-reported, they’re not a great indicator of future performance, which AI can predict much more accurately. When you reach the interview portion of the hiring process, use real-world examples that illustrate how you embody the skills listed above, rather than simply declaring you have them on a piece of paper.
Control your environment
At this point, we’ve all seen various video call fails uploaded across social media. While often harmless and amusing, these faux pas could negatively impact your chances of landing a job. Before your interview, find a spot with good lighting and low background noise. As awkward as it may feel, try to answer looking directly into the webcam to convey some of the visual cues lost via digital communication.
AI will continue to transform the hiring process of the future, and that’s not a bad thing. Many candidates fear the loss of human involvement, but real people still play a part in the process—AI simply helps them do it more quickly.
Peter Baskin is the chief product officer at Modern Hire.