Goldbeck’s staff look to the year ahead & see artificial intelligence playing a (limited) role, a stabilized supply chain, & busy recruiters
Artificial intelligence will change the world (but not completely). Supply chain challenges will continue to decrease, as will human interaction. The economy will be robust and recruiters will be busy. These are among the predictions that the Goldbeck Recruiting staff have for 2024. Let’s take a closer look at what we see happening in the year ahead.
Artificial Intelligence Not Ready to Replace Human Recruiters Just Yet
Artificial intelligence was a hot topic in 2023, as debates raged about its potential benefits and threats, even as we stood in amazement of its capabilities. This will continue in 2024, although its impact on the labour and recruiting market won’t be total.
Will AI Replace Human Recruiters?
“Every time a new technology is released, there are those who predict the demise of the recruiting industry,” says Henry Goldbeck.1 The Goldbeck Recruiting President believes that artificial intelligence has a place in the recruiting industry, but isn’t ready to declare the human recruiter obsolete just yet.
“Large, automated technology works well for large companies who are constantly hiring the same type of person for the same position and AI can be very helpful in terms of assessing and selecting from volumes of applicants,” says Goldbeck.
“We recognise that we’re not experts in the potential of AI but I don’t think we’re close to the stage where AI can do what we do in terms of specific job searches where each requirement is different and we’re looking for individual candidates who are already working, not applying for positions and need to be approached personally to assess their interest and fit. It will be successful in lower-level, multiple placement situations with volumes of applicants, but if and when it’ll be able to personally approach candidates who aren’t applying to the position, is still a question. It isn’t able to comprehend the idiosyncrasies of a position,” he continued.
AI Will Help Recruiters
While Karen Epp agrees with this assessment, she’s quick to point out that AI can be of assistance to recruiters. The Senior Recruiter recently gave Chat GPT a job description and asked it to produce some candidate questions.
“It produced a nice list of questions and presented it in a logical order,” says Epp, who also used the app to help her generate questions about the position for the employer. “Of course, I inserted additional questions,” she added.
Recruiting for AI Capabilities
It’s not just recruiters who are receiving help from Chat GPT and other AI systems. Goldbeck’s Senior Recruiters are noting that the evolution is making its way into job descriptions in other industries.
“My clients in finance have always requested candidates who are strong with data, but Chat GPT is changing their expectations,” says Epp. “They’re looking for people who can use artificial intelligence to analyze data on a scale that was previously impossible.”
Just as the computer and the fax machine changed the way that business was conducted, AI will eventually transform the workplace.
“These evolutions tend to happen slowly, then quickly,” says Goldbeck.
What Will the Labour Market Look Like in 2024?
After a busy 2022, the recruitment industry cooled slightly in 2023. Senior Recruiter Alessia Pagliaroli expects things to pick up in 24.
“2022 was a boom year for recruiters as people were finally on the move after several years of pandemic-related caution,” she says. “As a result of this robust movement, there was a natural slowdown in 2023. I don’t expect 2024 to be as tight.”
“Companies overcorrected in 2022, and we’re now returning to a balanced point,” concurs Executive Assistant Ciaran Henderson.
Henry Goldbeck is optimistic for 2024 but knows that anything can happen.
Regarding the year ahead, Goldbeck talks about the potential effects of global events. “Right now the war in Ukraine, Israel and Gaza and a hugely consequential election in the United States could have effects on World and Canadian economies in 2024 and beyond. As we navigate these intricate circumstances, we are still hopeful for a favourable outcome in Canadian markets.”
“The last few years have given us a worldwide epidemic, inflation, and war,” he says. He’s hopeful that stabilized interest rates and fewer calamities will add stability to 2024 but tempers his optimism with caution.
“If the conflicts in Europe or the Middle East widen, or if Donald Trump is elected President, that stability will be threatened,” he warns.
Supply Chain Will Improve in 2024
Another optimistic note relates to supply chain stability.
“2021 and 2022 were brutal for many companies in terms of shipping and logistics,” says Senior Recruiter Vanessa Cox. “We didn’t hear as many complaints from our clients in that regard in 2023, and I believe that will continue into 24.”
Pagliaroli is receiving similar reports.
“I’ve also heard from most of my clients that supply chain challenges have been improving in recent months, which is a great sign,” she says.
Digital Interactions Continue to Replace Human Contact
It’s no secret that life, both professionally and personally, has become increasingly digital in recent years. Pagliaroili sees no sign of this trend reversing.
“Any product or service that involves replacing a human interaction with a digital one will continue to flourish,” says the Senior Recruiter, citing home theatres replacing the cinema as one example.
Goldbeck points to restaurants as an industry that has been forced to change their service model in response.
“Obviously take-out has become an even larger portion of their business,” he says.
Several staff members note that they’ve been asked to pay a deposit in order to reserve a table.
“If it can be put toward the tab, that’s reasonable,” opines Henderson. “Putting down a few dollars increases the likelihood that the reservation-holder will actually show up.”
“If you’re asked to pay a deposit for each diner, it’s risky,” says Pagliaroli. “There’s always a chance that somebody in the party cancels.”
Pagliaroli understands the dynamics at play but remains hopeful that human connection will rebound.
“My hope is that at some point people will have had enough of house life and will want to get back out into the world,” she says.
If recent (and non-recent) history has taught us anything, it’s to expect the unexpected. Regardless of what takes place in 2024, it will be companies that strike the right balance between foresight and adaptability that are positioned for success. Investing in staffing and development will be a key component of success, both now, and into the foreseeable future.
1 Direct contact with Henry Goldbeck and other Goldbeck Recruiting staff members