Generative AI for HR: Keeping the Human in Human Resources

Part of a series  |  Generative AI Insights

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Organizations are exploring how generative artificial intelligence (AI) can improve the workdays of HR practitioners and employees. Various use cases are being experimented with, and new ones will continue to arise.

In discussions about generative AI for HR, the topic of how humans experience it is likely to come up. While generative AI can help us do great things, it can also raise concerns about its impact on people, especially in labor market contexts.

Generative AI will continue to affect our working lives, but could it also benefit us? Could generative AI for HR propel HR professionals into a more efficient workplace of tomorrow? Even though it's not human, could it help us keep the human in human resources?

The answer is yes. Creating human-centric workplace experiences with generative AI is possible, and it's already happening.

Benefit: Proactively nudging HR practitioners and employees

Proactively nudging HR practitioners and employees about tasks they need to perform, steps they should take or information they need to review — a human-machine interplay being added to today's HR software — can help productivity flourish.

"The typical way of interacting with HR systems will change as this technology develops," says Amin Venjara, chief data officer, ADP. "We're exploring the aid of human-like nudges, as in receiving the right information or push at the right time, based on what is typical or needed as a next step. In the short term, this is where we see the technology heading. The approach is called mixed initiative, where the human or computer can take the initiative, but they work together. In the end, that produces an easy, smart and human experience."

If you need a term for it, call it a nudge engine.

"This technology nudges users for HR problems or other matters," Venjara says. "For instance, if someone has been terminated from a position, the immediate thing a manager wants to do, in most cases, is open the backfill requisition. The technology already has many of the details and can begin the process, such as the job title, work location, level and salary range. Imagine that manager getting a nudge saying, 'You just terminated someone. Do you want to open a backfill requisition?' And the bulk of it is automatically filled in."

Benefit: Summarizing HR service desk calls

Generative AI for HR is also helping service representatives summarize their phone calls, benefitting both representatives and clients. The critical point is that generative AI is not replacing the representatives but empowering them as humans at work.

"The tool can automatically and accurately summarize their phone conversations," Venjara says, "which immediately boosts productivity."

So, how does it work, exactly?

"Not only is the summary available right after the call ends, but it's also already there in the event of a callback or if there is a different agent handling the callback," Venjara says. "It's efficient and provides a better experience for everyone. We've all experienced the frustration of contacting a company that is unable to locate relevant information from the prior call, right? The next development is to provide representatives with pre-written and approved solutions to common issues based on collective experiential data."

Benefit: Payroll reporting and processing assistance

Generative AI is helping payroll practitioners answer common and important reporting questions.

"It's a system that can proactively flag and help resolve compliance challenges," Venjara says. "For example, let's say your company operates in South Carolina, but you just hired someone who lives in North Carolina. The system notices that you don't have a tax registration on file for North Carolina, so therefore, no tax ID. It alerts you to that fact and asks if you have the North Carolina registration already. If your answer is no, the system offers to help initiate the registration process."

He adds, "This example shows the value of not only having the data but how pairing it with a human-like anticipated action and next steps helps improve efficiency and, in this case, compliance."

Generative AI can also help with payroll processing.

"This technology can process payrolls and identify any potential anomalies beforehand," Venjara says, "helping you resolve them, ensure accuracy and obtain valuable insights throughout the process."

The future of data and generative AI at work

HR companies, including ADP, are exploring how generative AI can improve the workdays of practitioners and employees. Various use cases are being experimented with, and new ones will continue to arise. Because the technology depends on data, working with an HR company with the most extensive workforce dataset is a safe bet.

"The depth and breadth of our data enable us to capture interactions, processes and transactions," Venjara says. "In turn, that allows us to not only address specific issues for individuals but also connect our data with large language models. This approach helps us solve complex problems while improving productivity for our teams and our clients."

For humans.

ADP and generative AI for HR

In addition to exploring the benefits of generative AI, ADP has adopted rigorous principles and processes to govern its use of generative AI and AI in general.

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