Why Healthcare HR Should Embrace Artificial Intelligence
Many supporters of artificial intelligence (AI) in healthcare promote its potential for improving diagnostics, predicting treatment effectiveness and patient outcomes, and providing new insights into EHR data and population health. While AI does have potential for clinical application, it may also have a future in healthcare human resource (HR) departments.
Given the potential of AI to transform the workplace, HR professionals also may become enthusiastic supporters of AI. Here are some ways that AI can be implemented for healthcare HR.
1. Automation paired with AI can help alleviate the healthcare worker shortage.
The healthcare industry across the globe continues to face provider shortages, combined with growing provider burnout and an aging physician population. Providers may also be disproportionately concentrated, leaving rural and other underserved areas struggling to attract and hire providers.
The use of AI, especially when paired with telemedicine, may make it easier for providers to care for more patients. This could reduce some of the need for and cost of hiring additional providers and support staff.
AI software can support diagnostic decisions and help doctors more quickly complete administrative and other time-consuming tasks. Patient-facing AI tools could also be used to deliver targeted messaging and content that encourage patient engagement and disease prevention, possibly reducing demand for healthcare. All these capabilities could put less pressure on providers and staff, potentially reducing burnout and turnover.
2. The use of AI can improve the hiring process.
For healthcare HR professionals, AI can be used in nearly all stages of the hiring process. Job applications can be sorted and analyzed with AI software. A digital, AI-based solution may also limit the potential for hiring bias.
Sophisticated algorithms can analyze incoming applications and resumes, evaluating their content to find the best candidates. By making more strategic hires, HR departments could reduce the potential for turnover and its associated costs.
AI software can also be used to help onboard new hires. New employees who have common questions about organizational policy may be directed to AI-based chatbots for answers. Chatbots may also be used to help new hires complete standard paperwork. This can leave HR professionals free to manage more personal, complex tasks, such as in-person training, facility tours, and making introductions.
3. AI can analyze employee behavior and flag potential issues.
Healthcare HR personnel may also use AI to flag employee behavior that could indicate they are preparing to leave the organization. AI software can track behaviors on company computers, such as Internet browsing, emails, and keystrokes. Factors that deviate from the organization’s normal activity patterns may be flagged and analyzed.
By detecting changes in employee communications, AI tools may be able to predict when an employee is preparing to quit. The software can alert HR staff to a potential issue, giving them time to respond appropriately.
4. Use of AI to analyze data can help HR departments during a dispute.
Resolving disputes between employees, or between an employer and employee, requires evidence and facts. Because data are critical in such cases, this is another potential application of AI software.
HR can use AI software to gather data that can confirm or refute an individual’s version of the dispute. Existing documents and other data, such as communications, invoices, and login information, can be analyzed with AI software to provide a more accurate view of an incident. This may be especially valuable in addressing issues before they become possible litigation.
The Future of Artificial Intelligence in Healthcare HR
Although further innovation and refining is necessary before AI is more widely implemented in healthcare, the technology has already shown enormous potential as both a clinical and administrative tool. Recruiting and hiring professionals in the healthcare field should consider how these technologies can improve their departments’ operations and how their organizations can begin to use AI solutions.
At the same time, healthcare leaders can recognize that AI will not soon replace the “human” angle of healthcare HR. When implementing AI, a healthcare organization’s overall goal should be to give HR more time to engage with employees, candidates, and organ