THE IMPACT OF AI ON HUMAN CAPITAL IN 2024
Artificial intelligence (AI) is driving rapid global change, and its impact on the field of HR is being realized faster than anticipated, revolutionizing HR practices. This raises important questions: Will AI replace human jobs? How will the AI era affect human capital? How can HR adapt to AI? This article examines employee concerns, strategies for adapting to AI, and the impact of AI on human capital.

Will AI take over human jobs?

Employees are concerned that AI will make their jobs obsolete, while others fear that AI will take over their jobs. Morgan Stanley estimates that AI will take over a quarter of today's occupations. According to research, 80% of the existing jobs may be affected, 19% of these jobs will see 50% of their tasks being affected, and in due course, all jobs will see their core tasks change significantly. For example, as chatbots are designed to handle all initial inquiries and provide basic information or assistance to clients, customer service personnel are no longer the first point of contact. However, AI and automation predominantly impact specific tasks rather than entire jobs. AI will fundamentally transform and reshape jobs, eliminating some tasks while bridging skills and knowledge gaps to enhance other roles. HR needs to find the optimal blend between humans and technology. Both should be able to complement each other's skills and abilities. AI cannot fully grasp the nuance or empathy. It is good at finding information, fielding questions in real time, and making sense of data. AI will drive organizational change, impact workflows, automate jobs, and create new ones, but humans augmented by machines will drive innovations.

What are the impacts of AI on Human Capital?

AI can streamline tasks, and reduce the total talent management time by one-third. It can also automate a range of duties, therefore, speeding up any project management tasks. AI chatbots eliminate data entry work and reduce managers' employee support hours. It can also field routine HR inquiries. AI democratizes knowledge and creativity, enabling innovation, complex problem-solving, and high-quality work. AI can schedule training and manage registrations. Generative AI can provide real-time feedback, answer the trainees' questions, and analyze the training evaluation data to suggest improvements. AI chatbots are also capable of handling routine HR inquiries. With the right technology, companies can free up more time for high-value work. AI technologies are very proficient at problem-solving, so managers need to be better at problem-finding. AI technology helps managers to lead teams of human and digital workers.

How should HR adopt AI?

Employees should seek training on how to use these new technologies. Managers and leaders in organizations should strive to train their employees on how to use AI. Companies and education providers need to provide training on how to use AI technologies. During the age of AI, due to the increased demand for creative and analytical thinking, cognitive skills are very crucial. AI, being integrated into the workforce, is a side-by-side coworker of the employees. Cognitive skills are very critical when interacting with AI, as well as soft skills that we use with human coworkers. The concept of digital curiosity entails seeking out and using emerging digital technologies to enhance one's cognitive skills. While implementing AI technologies, organizations should enable a more employee-centric experience. Learning programs, modern rewards, and benefits enrollment might overwhelm employees. Guide them with data-driven suggestions based on their health, wealth, and career goals. This makes that end of the deal more intuitive. In the end, HR and business leaders can spend more time on the strategic, talent-critical conversation- a win-win situation. Organizations can implement the concept of work design, which entails breaking down jobs into tasks, assigning those tasks to the right contributors- AI, robotics, internal talent- and rebuilding work processes around the right mix of humans and technology.

Conclusion

As AI technologies continue to advance and assume more responsibilities, organizations must establish guidelines and policies to ensure safe and healthy use of AI in the workplace. Top executives should embrace disruptions brought about by the AI era and create a synergy between AI and human capital to minimize employee layoffs.  

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