Artificial Intelligence in Human Resources Management: Challenges and a Path Forward

34 Pages Posted: 1 Nov 2018 Last revised: 15 Apr 2019

See all articles by Peter Cappelli

Peter Cappelli

University of Pennsylvania Wharton School - Center for Human Resources; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); University of Pennsylvania - Management Department

Prasanna Tambe

Wharton School, U. Pennsylvania

Valery Yakubovich

ESSEC Business School

Date Written: April 8, 2019

Abstract

We consider the gap between the promise and reality of artificial intelligence in human resource management and suggest how progress might be made. We identify four challenges in using data science techniques for HR tasks: 1) complexity of HR phenomena, 2) constraints imposed by small data sets, 3) accountability questions associated with fairness and other ethical and legal constraints, and 4) possible adverse employee reactions to management decisions via data-based algorithms. We propose practical responses to these challenges and converge on three overlapping principles - causal reasoning, randomization and experiments, and employee contribution—that could be both economically efficient and socially appropriate for using data science in the management of employees.

Keywords: artificial intelligence, human resource management, algorithmic management, big data, machine learning, data science

JEL Classification: C55, C63, J00, M12

Suggested Citation

Cappelli, Peter and Tambe, Prasanna and Yakubovich, Valery, Artificial Intelligence in Human Resources Management: Challenges and a Path Forward (April 8, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3263878 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3263878

Peter Cappelli

University of Pennsylvania Wharton School - Center for Human Resources ( email )

3733 Spruce Street, Vance Hall
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6358
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.wharton.upenn.edu/faculty/cappelli.html

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

University of Pennsylvania - Management Department ( email )

The Wharton School
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6370
United States

Prasanna Tambe

Wharton School, U. Pennsylvania ( email )

Philadelphia, PA 19104
United States

Valery Yakubovich (Contact Author)

ESSEC Business School ( email )

France

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