(This article is part of Artificial Intelligence Series For board members and senior executives. )
Big company officials across the country are waving their hands. The economic climate of 2023 is uncertain, but one thing is for sure – more layoffs are coming. In November 2022, more than 80,000 layoffs were announced by technology giants such as Meta, Amazon, and Twitter, as well as regular companies such as PepsiCo, Goldman Sachs and Ford.
Reducing is one of the most difficult things a leader must accomplish. How much should you throw away? When should you do it? Who stays and who goes? What monopoly do you offer? How do you defend your goal of diversity? How to maintain confidence and productivity in the occupants?
Allow too much too fast and you may damage the service and execution. Leave too little too late and you may lose money. Let the wrong people and you just create internal chaos. This liability can have huge consequences for profits, productivity, brand reputation and stock price.
Which makes me think – can AI help solve this problem?
Throughout the year of aggressive growth, AI has helped screen HR resources, screen and interview candidates, and even reduce job bias. IBM and others have used AI to predict which employees are about to resign. Attraction and save are the names of the game.
So what about layoffs? Are there AI tools that help guide corporate decisions? As it turns out, I want to share with you five ways AI can make “organizational rights management” work for the benefit of both employers and employees:
Empower your organization: 5 ways AI can help.
1. Performance evaluation
When there is a layoff, the department manager is always given a quota on the number of heads and told to choose who to cut. But for managers in the bunker, each department member seems necessary. Without the tools and experience to guide their decisions, the process can be chaotic and morally devastating.
AI can provide objective performance appraisal to help managers decide who stays And who goes. AI startups such as GoFusion Perfacto and Entomo use data from employee productivity, attendance records, and other KPIs to help differentiate star players based on performance metrics.
This approach gives department heads a justification for their mitigation decisions, freeing both leaders and teams of the worst of decision-making issues purely subjective.
2. Specialty Inventory
When pressured to decline, it is human nature for managers to make decisions biased toward short-term needs. Maintaining the most essential talent for your core business activities today really makes sense in theory. But when it happens across the board, it can leave you unprepared for the most important strategic initiatives of your future.
AI can help compare the inventory of your organization’s skills distribution with a forecast of what will be needed in the market and determine where the skills gap is, so you can take that factor into your decision. Tools like eightfold.ai and Seekout boast what they call “ingenious intelligence”, combining an understanding of staff skills with market and organizational needs to make data-driven talent decisions. This allows the C-suite to consider the talent management needs of the entire organization, not just individual sections.
3. Potential of retraining
Layoffs mean fewer employees, each wearing more hats. The organization was restructured. Functions are unified. And employees often have to take on new roles and learn new skills as a result. AI can help identify those employees who are better candidates for re-skills and guide them on how to help them expand or change their roles.
HR programs like Pymetrics and Workday have tools for analyzing soft and hard data skills in your existing workforce, along with certifications, records, past project implementation, and clearances to identify the strongest mobility or job opportunities. . Sometimes they even include a personal training guide and a training module so you have a clear path towards staff reinforcement.
4. Avoiding bias
When the time is right, it is easier to pay enough attention to the sense of equality of the organization. But when the pressures of layoffs come to an end, that solution may begin to falter. How can you ensure that decisions are made fairly, objectively and in line with your organization’s equity objectives? Which? How can you defend your organization’s commitment to diversity and equality?
AI can help here as well. HR, for example, is launching an “impact analysis solution” that analyzes data across departments and informs HR and legal teams of possible biases in the group of employees selected for dismissal.
Even fired employees, AI can play a role. Helping to change your staff is not only the right thing to do, but it is important to protect your organization from external and internal reputational damage.
AI can help identify the roles and companies that employees should seek and support them in acquiring the skills they need to get a new job successfully. FutureFit AI, for example, compares staff skills with hundreds of millions of others. Then, using real-time job market data, it introduces career transitions and asks for study paths to help retired employees succeed – all with AI.
AI from companies such as BlueJ Legal can help you determine the optimal amount of compensation to be paid to your departed employees in accordance with their age, role, duration of service and litigation law.
To be clear, I am not advocating for handing over the dismissal decision to wholesale AI. While it may be good to fully transfer the dirty act of downgrade to AI, people still need to deal with layoffs strategically and empathetically. But used properly, AI can really support leaders in one of the most difficult decisions we all have to make.
If you are concerned about how AI is determining the winners and losers in your business and how you can use AI to benefit your organization, I encourage you to stay tuned. I write (almost) completely about how senior executives, board members and other business leaders can use AI effectively. You can read past articles and receive notifications of new articles by clicking the “Follow” button here.