Candidate Intelligence

When AI Meets Human Decision-Making: Lessons from the Frontlines

Andrew Buhrmann
October 10, 2023
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In 2018, reached a significant milestone. The world's leading AI company became our customer, integrating our advanced AI ranking and matching technology into their Applicant Tracking System (ATS). It was a moment that made us pause and reflect, especially when we noticed something intriguing. Despite their technological prowess, they weren't devoting internal resources to leverage this AI in their own hiring processes. Even more surprising, their parent company launched a suite of hiring tools only to shut it down shortly after.

Two Key Lessons in AI and HR

From this experience, we learned two crucial lessons:

  1. Scaling AI is Challenging: Implementing AI and semantic search in HR is not a walk in the park. It's filled with roadblocks, from data quality issues to integration challenges.
  2. Human Opinions Matter: There's a constant tug-of-war between data-driven AI recommendations and human opinions. This battle is real, ongoing, and often tips the scale in favor of human judgment.

Beyond HR: AI in Education

This tension between machine and human decision-making isn't limited to HR. During the pandemic, we built customized AI models for 40 universities to help screen applications when standardized tests were unavailable. The same tension was evident: people will always have the final say, whether your algorithms are spot-on or not.

Questions to Ponder

As we continue to integrate AI into various aspects of our lives and work, it's essential to ask:

  • Are there specific situations where you're comfortable delegating decisions to an AI model?
  • What's your risk tolerance for AI in your daily work activities?
  • What would it take for you to trust a machine to assist you in decision-making?

A Note on AI Imperfections

When our AI recommendations achieved over 90% accuracy, the focus often shifted to the remaining 10% error. Explaining AI is a challenge in itself. People find it hard to accept even the slightest imperfections from AI. They often view it as a mathematical equation rather than a tool that aids but doesn't replace human judgment.

As we continue to innovate and improve our AI solutions at, we invite you to join the conversation. How do you see AI shaping your decision-making processes, and where do you draw the line?