Home Knowledge Employment & Benefits 12 Days of Christmas – AI in the Workplace

Employment & Benefits 12 Days of Christmas – AI in the Workplace


Artificial intelligence in the Workplace  

Welcome to day 4 of our 12 Days of Christmas series. Today we look back on our Artificial Intelligence in the Workplace series (“A.I. Series”).

Readers of our A.I. Series will recall that during this year, we have been analysing the potential impact of Artificial Intelligence (“AI”) on recruitment and inter-generational working. We discussed the potential positive effects that AI could have on the workplace and the possible amendments to Irish legislation that may be required. 

AI-Assisted Recruitment and Employment Equality Law 

In May 2018, we considered how AI has assisted employers and employees in the recruitment process. From an employment equality perspective, technology can be used to assist both employers and employees in this regard. However, technology will not in itself mean that the traditional recruitment process is no longer important. Technology will still need to be programmed by humans and this part of the process will leave room for bias to be inbuilt in the foundations of recruitment technology. There is a danger that the negatives in the traditional recruitment process may be normalised in AI-assisted recruitment, with certain demographics being unable to proceed to face-to-face interview stage, and, ultimately, employment. Employers can assist in ensuring the process is not compromised by stress-testing the AI recruitment process internally and appointing a human employee to audit various stages of the process. It is vital that time and effort is put into how technology can be used and how it fits into an organisation’s current process. 

While the Employment Equality Acts 1998-2015 (the “Acts”) prohibit discrimination against a prospective employee, whether the definitions and protections contained in the Acts are broad enough to capture discrimination by AI in the recruitment process is untested at present. However, if used correctly (with bias eliminated), the process can protect against latent or inherent bias of humans, thereby reducing the risk of either a human or AI breach of the Acts. Read our full original article here.  

AI and Inter-generational Working 

In light of the increasingly common incidences of delayed retirement, we contemplated how AI might help different generations work together in harmony. A variety of factors, such as higher living costs, the extension of the age of receipt of the State pension and improved health and fitness have led to a situation where, for the first time in history, five generations can be found working together. Each generation has different expectations and perceptions of what a workplace should be and how work should be carried out. For employers, managing such diverse groups of employees and creating a harmonised workplace can be challenging. 

For many employers, their focus is shifting from generational differences between employees, to harnessing ‘generational intelligence’ by seeking to retain knowledge and skills that are unique to each generation. AI can help employers to achieve harmony in the workplace, by creating virtual workspaces which promote engagement with employees who are close to “traditional” retirement age. Currently in Ireland there is a lack of legislative guidance on both A.I. and flexible working. However, the virtual and collaborative workspaces that AI creates facilitates the movement of intelligence between generations by allowing older generations to impart experience and skills, while allowing younger generations to share their technological expertise. This gives employers options to extend employment, which can be of assistance to those looking to avoid increasingly common age-related discrimination claims. Read our full original article here.




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