Conversational AI
4 min read
February 2, 2023

HR practitioners make sense of ChatGPT and what it means for the future of TA.

Conversational and generative AI sound like fancy buzzwords, but where is the value and what are the pitfalls? Paradox’s VP of Talent Kristen Bailey is joined in the conversation by two other Paradox leaders: Head of Strategic Solutions Eleanor Vajzovic, and former McDonald’s Head of Global TA Joshua Secrest. Here’s what they had to say.

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Everyone is chatting about ChatGPT.

And now Bing. And Bard. And AI in general. It’s official: conversational AI has gone mainstream.

You probably have a lot of questions. Frankly, so do we. To make sense of how this tech might shape the world of talent acquisition and HR,  we sat down with some of our Paradox experts — longtime talent and HR leaders for global companies with expertise rooted firmly in all things people and team building, but not necessarily in large language processing technology. The goal: let’s figure this out together.

Where is the value and what are the pitfalls?

And what does it mean for the industry as a whole?

Paradox’s VP of Talent Kristen Bailey is joined in the conversation by two other Paradox leaders: Head of Strategic Solutions Eleanor Vajzovic, and former McDonald’s Head of Global TA Joshua Secrest.

Here’s what they had to say:

Please note this exchange has been lightly edited for readability. 

Kristen Bailey:

I think there's a couple of simple places in the hiring process where you could see [ChatGPT] really being helpful. For example, writing a job description. A lot of times that hiring manager or recruiter trying to write a job description might be copying and pasting an old one to aggregate information. That could be a huge time saver and give you a jumpstart in your process, right? Same with building an interview guide for this position. There's so much information that already exists and this would just give you such a nice head start. At Paradox, we’re seeing that we can automate and take a lot of tasks off of a recruiter or a hiring manager's plate and allow them to do the things that they're great at.

[ChatGPT] is so new that there’s a rush to say, “how is this gonna help me?” We as TA leaders need to think about the problems we are trying to solve. What processes do we need help with? Josh?

Joshua Secrest:

Yeah, I think that's really cool. When we think about technology, it feels like there are common themes. TA leaders want something that is: 

1. Really effective. It does the thing we want it to do. <laughs> 

2. We would prefer it to be really fast, if it does the thing that we want it to do, but it takes days or it takes even minutes than it’s clunky and ineffective.

3. And then you want it to be really simple and intuitive. We always talk about the iPhone, and being able to take an iPhone right out of the box and use it.

This idea of conversational and generative AI, those sound like really fancy buzzwords, but ultimately it's technology that's super fast, super effective, really simple to learn for anybody. And whenever you have that recipe together, you're probably gonna start to see pretty fast adoption. I think we at Paradox have seen the power of conversational AI really kind of take over in spaces where fast hiring really matters. We have a lot of our clients like the McDonald's of the world where their managers are the ones that are doing their hiring for them, not recruiters. So allowing for their experience being simple, fast, and convenient matters for the success of the business. 

Eleanor, what's your take?

Eleanor Vazjovic:

I love that. A lot of times when we're mapping out solutions and strategy with our clients and we're introducing technology like Paradox, it’s essentially a “generational leap” forward from what they're used to doing. Sometimes it's the first time they're introducing technology into the field or into the hands of their operators or even going from paper applications to Paradox. Or they're going from something that they implemented 20 years ago and this is a big change.

Most of the time there's a fear or there's a hesitance to adopt this new tech, whether it be Paradox, whether it be potentially ChatGPT. So it’s important to constantly be showing and highlighting the problems that they're solving.

What could a user manual be for this complex tech? Especially when we are seeing leaner teams being asked to do more with less.

Josh Secrest:

You're right, in some cases it's not a full time recruiter that is doing the hiring but they're still automating 95% plus of their process and doing it in a way that's pretty easy to learn, pretty easy to pick up, and taking chunks of time off their plate. Juxtaposed to just a couple years back where they were having to log into clunky systems, do a lot of manual lifting, spending a lot of time dedicated to scheduling candidates or moving candidates through a process when they should really be helping customers on the floor during a time when they're understaffed or helping their, their teams when they're understaffed.

I can see in the future, ChatGPT 2.0 or 3.0 versions being something that's up on most of our TA leaders desks when they're prepping for a kickoff meeting. Recently, I saw one post that somebody was asking ChatGPT to “define what a good candidate would look like versus a great candidate.” And it was really an incredible thought starter. Spending five minutes on ChatGPT with the right types of questions and recruiters can go into kickoff meetings with a lot more intelligence and creativity.

Kristen Bailey:

Yeah, I just came back to the thought of how can this help us, right? I think we're a long way away from technology like this replacing the human judgment that's required to make complex decisions and something as important as a hiring process. So as we think about the work that we do and the problems we're trying to solve for ourselves and our clients, it really showcases the beauty of conversational technology and how this new emerging technology continues to help us on that journey. I'm excited to continue learning and playing and experimenting. I think that's super important for us to embrace the change and to see where it could potentially help us out.

Eleanor Vazjovic:

I think it's an evolution, right? With Paradox, our view has always been we're “assisting” and removing the redundant or administrative work right from the heart of the process. And when it comes to ChatGPT, where do we not have to worry? And where do we see it more as a complement to what we're already doing today?

[ChatGPT] is almost like an assistant to help us compile information faster so that we can present that information to the hiring manager faster. To me, this is where I start to see the evolution and kind of the transition where it's not a replacement of existing people or processes or even existing technology, but it's more so a complement.

Listen in on the whole conversation:

Written by
Tyler McEvilly
Content Specialist
Tyler McEvilly
Written by

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