Artificial intelligence: the potential impact on the work of the HR function

Past HR Network Event

2 May 2019

Event resources

View the slides (for HR Network members)


Artificial intelligence: The potential impact on the work of the HR function
Peter Reilly, Principal Associate, IES

Related reading

Reilly P (2018) The impact of artificial intelligence on the HR function, IES Perspectives on HR 2018, Member Paper 142. (This contains a substantial reading list).

This workshop covered:

The potential impact of AI on:

  • Administration
  • Case work
  • Recruitment
  • Learning and development
  • Reward and performance management
  • Analytics and data management


Peter Reilly, Principal Associate, Institute for Employment Studies

Event details

This workshop got delegates up to speed on the current understanding around artificial intelligence, addressing its potential to profoundly affect the work of the HR function. AI may streamline transactional work, speed up recruitment, allow new forms of training and reinvigorate reward and performance management, etc.

However, the facilitator discussed serious risks that need to be considered in technological adoption. These range from data security through opaque decision making processes to unethical design.

We need to confront these challenges and find solutions if we are to optimise the use of AI without facing employee or legal objections, or poor business outcomes. This requires a clear sighted view of why AI is being used and how it can best be managed, avoiding the hype and the seductive promises of over optimistic sales pitches of technology providers.