As AI becomes more prevalent in recruitment, new regulations target discriminatory practices

AI and ML Jobs

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New York City employers using artificial intelligence (AI) tools in their hiring will soon be subject to new regulations. Starting April 15, Local Law 144 will go into effect, requiring employers to notify candidates if they are using her AI in their employment.

Local Law 144 is the first law in the United States regarding the use of AI in employment. The New York City Department of Consumer and Worker Protection originally set an enforcement date of January 1, but after a “substantial amount of thoughtful comment,” the date was pushed back, prompting the agency to finalize the rule. He said he would make a decision. the next few months.

As currently written, the law requires employers to:

  • Conduct bias audits before using automated hiring decision tools
  • Notify candidates and employees that tools are being used
  • Outline to candidates job qualifications and characteristics that AI will use

Employers are subject to civil penalties if they comply with or violate any provision.

NYC is not the only government agency working on this issue. In January, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) released a draft Strategic Implementation Plan focused on reducing bias in AI recruitment technology.

And in October, the White House released a white paper titled “Blueprint for the AI ​​Rights Bill: Making Automated Systems Work for the American People.”

new tools, new rules

One of the main motivations behind these kinds of laws is the potential for discrimination and prejudice resulting from these AI tools.

The EEOC issued guidance in May on how AI tools can be discriminatory. Because the AI ​​is automated to look for specific keywords, qualifications, and requirements, the software will likely filter out qualified candidates who don’t fit that exact mold, the agency wrote.

One example the agency gave was a chatbot that could reject candidates with significant gaps in their resumes. I argued that I would exclude this person from the list of eligible candidates.

At a Jan. 31 hearing titled “Navigating Employment Discrimination in AI and Automated Systems: The New Frontiers of Civil Rights,” EEOC Chairman Charlotte Burroughs said 99% of Fortune 500 companies 83% of employers, including employers, said they currently use some kind of automated tool. Part of the hiring process.

Work with the system, not against it

A small but still significant number of these companies report using AI software in addition to automation tools during recruitment.

in a questionnaire bio space In a survey conducted three weeks after Burrows’ statement, 22% of respondents said their organizations are using AI technology in their hiring process. Many of the respondents are part of the life sciences industry.

Prestige Scientific, a life sciences recruitment and executive search firm, is one of them. Managing Director and Co-Founder Stephen Provost said: bio space The addition of AI in candidate screening at Prestige has been implemented within the last six months.

“The benefits of AI for the future are clear,” Provost said. can return good results.”

He emphasized that life sciences candidates in particular can use the system to reduce their chances of being excluded from AI searches. He said there are a number of acronyms and jargon commonly used in the industry, so candidates should include those specific words in their resumes.

“Most companies have some sort of software filter that searches for specific keywords,” he says. “In this industry, it’s good practice to use acronyms and write out what they stand for, because the person setting up the AI ​​has no idea how it will query the database. ”

Anne Hunter is the founder of Hunter Marketing AI, a consultancy focused on helping companies integrate AI tools. She recommended fighting fire with fire, using her AI software to automatically edit a candidate’s resume and cover her letter to match keywords in the job description.

Hunter emphasized how AI can help prevent discrimination.

“Optimistically, AI screening helps eliminate bias because it looks for skill matches between candidates and roles, rather than making judgments based on individual characteristics,” she said. I was. “This is a step up from old prejudices such as shared tastes in college and perceived demographic abilities that hiring managers can be influenced by at first sight of a resume.”

In fact, unintentional bias from automated recruiting tools is easier to avoid than intentional bias from real people. Still, Provost cautioned against blindly listing certain keywords or phrases on your resume.

“If a candidate doesn’t have experience in that area to be interviewed, we don’t recommend adding anything to their resume,” Provost said. “For many HR and talent acquisition professionals, the candidate quickly loses credibility…the number one way to stand out in the negative.”

As these tools continue to evolve, job seekers must evolve with them if they are to keep up with the competition. Similarly, new legal measures like New York City’s Local Law 144 will soon force employers to do the same.

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