AI Recruiting Tech Is Blowing Up

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I can’t go a day without reading another article about AI recruiting tech or getting another email from an AI startup pitching their product. Some of them are interesting, chatbots streamlining the process of screening candidates, data-driven systems who calculate the exact right time to reach out and bias free filter systems. Others, the all-in-one “smart-recruiters,” are ambitious but are a few years short of going from science fiction to science fact.

The growth in artificial intelligence technology in our field has become such a major talking point among recruiters that we have forgot to ask the most important question, who is building out these AI teams?

Over $650 million dollars in talent acquisition efforts in 2016 for just AI roles was spent by Amazon (AMZN), Google (GOOGL), Microsoft (MSFT), Nvidia (NVDA), Rocket Fuel (FUEL) and many more of the major players in tech and enterprise. Startups with AI as their core product acquired over $5 billion in funding. In a time when AI-focused companies and staffing is one of the fastest growing areas in high-tech, it is pivotal for recruiters to break into the scene. But for many, even recruiters with extensive backgrounds in digital and technology, the hurdles to jump in locating talent in an emerging industry are foreboding to many in our space.

Recently I, along with other like-minded innovators, have founded, an initiative dedicated to fostering artificial intelligence focused conversations among industry leaders. With our inaugural roundtable, the major names in artificial intelligence from Facebook (FB) to Clarifai came together to discuss the issues involved with building artificial intelligence divisions, investing within AI and business models in the current landscape.

What Companies Should Be Looking For

For the businesses who want to invest heavily in their artificial intelligence initiatives, it is not a matter of just hiring a Chief Innovation Officer or savvy young tech genius to come in, shake things up and then leave to find their own startup. Companies, from enterprise to VC-backed startup, need to understand the pipeline of their business model and where artificial intelligence is applicable within that pipeline. Vendors within the AI space must also follow suit. “I see hundreds of business models,” says Global Director of Emerging Tech Partnerships & Investments for Thomson Reuters, Joyce J. Shen “and about 80% of them are complete crap.” Any company looking to innovate with AI needs to understand their business model with AI and then can go about building out their team. AI isn’t the business model: it should make your core business better.

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