Artificial intelligence has started to impact the hiring process for contingent labor, and it is likely that its influence will continue to grow.

Your providers — from temporary staffing firms and freelance marketplaces to direct sourcing solutions and online staffing platforms — are likely engaging with some kind of AI in the sourcing and onboarding process. With so much new tech entering the workforce solutions ecosystem, contingent workforce program managers may not need to be experts in AI technology, but they should have a general awareness of how each provider is using AI to support their program. Here are some examples.

Matching and sourcing. AI-powered platforms often use advanced algorithms to match job requirements with the skills and experience of workers in their applicant tracking databases. Just as human resources and talent acquisition departments may use automated matching in their direct hire applicant tracking system connected to the HR information systems, staffing firms do the same with ATS systems that pull candidates from job boards and other résumé sources. This enables faster and more accurate sourcing of candidates, saving time and effort for both the employer and the candidate in the sourcing process.

Screening and shortlisting. AI can automate the initial screening and shortlisting of candidates based on predefined criteria. This helps to identify the most relevant and qualified candidates from a large pool of applicants more quickly. The criteria the system uses should be carefully considered with the goals of the organization in mind. For example, companies with a diversity, equity and inclusion goal may choose to make certain candidate attributes blind to avoid bias in the screening process and enhance diversity hiring.

Skills assessment. AI-powered tools can assess candidates’ skills and abilities through various means such as online tests, simulations or even analysis of previous work samples. This helps in evaluating candidates objectively and reduces biases. These tools may also be able to proctor tests, helping prevent fraud in the hiring process by enabling the organization to confirm the person taking the test is actually the same person showing up for the job.

Chatbots and virtual assistants. AI-driven chatbots and virtual assistants can interact with candidates, answering their questions, scheduling interviews and providing updates on their application status. This improves the candidate experience and streamlines communication. Staffing firms are using these tools to keep their candidate databases fresh and make their recruiters more efficient, ultimately providing better support to the candidates and reducing the time to fill your roles.

Performance monitoring. For companies that have contingent workers engaged in remote work, AI tools can help to monitor their performance and productivity. These tools can provide insights into how efficiently they are working and deliver data-driven feedback to both the employer and the worker. Some simply manage the active time a worker is interacting inside a particular system or collaboration tool, making it easier to manage their hours worked against time summited and identifying trends.

Workforce planning. AI-driven analytics can assist in predicting peak work periods, project demands and skill gaps, enabling organization to plan their contingent labor needs more effectively.

Risk and compliance management. AI tools can help assess and manage risk associated with contingent labor, including compliance with labor laws, contract management and managing necessary credentials.

Predictive analytics. AI can analyze historical data from past hiring decisions to identify patterns and trends related to successful workers. For example, measuring different attributes of those who completed the assignment compared to those who terminated the assignment early. This information can help in making more informed hiring choices and predicting the performance of future contingent hires.

With AI also comes unintended risk and concerns around data privacy, algorithmic bias and potential discrimination in the hiring process. These concerns should be considered and addressed to ensure fairness and transparency in your program. It is a good idea to stay on top of how your providers might be using AI to support your program and how these tools might impact bias.

To learn more about how AI is transforming our industry, attend the Collaboration in the Gig Economy event Sept. 19 – 21 in Dallas.