Editor’s Note: This story originally appeared on FlexJobs.com.
AI has been reshaping the job search process for some time. From the first introduction of applicant tracking systems to the latest use of chatbots and intelligent algorithms, AI has been a game-changer — and sometimes a source of anxiety.
It’s an exciting time to be a job seeker, but it can also be a bit overwhelming. There are multiple ways AI can impact your job hunt, and many with positive results.
Understanding the role AI plays in your job search can help you effectively leverage the technology and also strategize in areas where it might be less beneficial.
Beneficial Ways AI Can Impact Your Job Search
AI can help you streamline your job search from behind the scenes, where employers operate recent technology, to the systems and processes you leverage to meet your goals.
AI Speeds Up the Job Search Process
Perhaps more than any other benefit, this is the perk that job seekers and employers both focus on. AI works behind the scenes, applying complex algorithms that sift through vast amounts of data in mere seconds.
As such, AI can help employers and job seekers sort through hundreds of applications more efficiently. And that saved time can reduce the time between submitting an application and the first interview.
Not only that, but chatbots and automated video interviews are becoming increasingly common. With automated functions, from resume scanners to AI-powered interviewing, the potential time savings are vast.
You can also use Google’s Interview Warmup to help you practice for your job interviews in your own time.
AI Creates Personalized Job Matching
With hundreds if not thousands of job postings to sort through, finding the right job is like mining for gold — time-consuming and complicated to target precisely. That is, until AI gets added to the mix.
AI-powered job matching is utilized in multiple ways. Some sites leverage algorithms to help job seekers find the best fit through keywords and search intent.
And that can work on both sides of the process. Recruiters can leverage resume searches to find applicants that meet desired skill sets and interest profiles.
Other sites use intuitive AI to deliver personalized matches that improve with use. Behind the scenes, companies use AI to create a more engaging, customized experience and distinguish themselves as an employer of choice.
That might be in the form of predictive analytics, which compares a candidate’s resume with successful employees and offers an estimated success rate for that candidate.
Other companies leverage gamification to create a more engaging process.
AI Can Create Your Documents Faster
Keywords, formats, fonts, action verbs. It’s enough to make your head spin. But AI is revolutionizing how you create your resume and cover letters — not to mention how you can tailor them for each role.
Candidates can now use language learning models, like ChatGPT, to create more exciting and powerful bullet points. Not only that, but many automated resume builders are incorporating the ability to input job descriptions and rank how well you’ve communicated your job fit.
Need help finding keywords? There’s an AI tool for that. Choose from a simple word cloud generator highlighting the most common words, or use one of the AI-powered resume builders.
If all that still sounds too cumbersome, you can load the job description into ChatGPT and ask it to identify the top five skills from the posting. You can also use ChatGPT to create an engaging first draft of a cover letter.
Again, these AI tools can significantly reduce your time investment and increase your odds of ranking higher.
You’re not just limited to your resume and cover letter either. You can connect ChatGPT with your Gmail via the Zapier app. Follow-up emails are easier than ever with AI doing a lot of the heavy lifting for you.
Potential Drawbacks of AI in Your Job Search
There are many benefits to embracing AI in your job hunt, but that doesn’t mean it’s always a smooth ride.
While AI has significantly enhanced the job search process, it has potential drawbacks.
AI Makes Connecting Nearly Impossible
A notable challenge of using AI throughout your job search is the need for more personal interaction in the early stages.
AI-driven algorithms are used by employers to quickly scan resumes and cover letters for keywords, making it challenging to let your personality do the talking.
Additionally, AI-based tools conduct online interviews, which can feel highly impersonal and intimidating for job seekers unfamiliar with technology.
With more sophisticated screening, your resume and written documents must carry you through, rather than your engaging storytelling and captivating presence.
AI Means Increased Competition
Rather than create less competition, AI’s wide accessibility in job hunting is creating more competition on a massive scale.
As a result, crafting resumes and cover letters is easier than ever, and a well-written resume no longer guarantees that you’ll stand out from the competition.
Every candidate has access to the same tools. Therefore, many candidates have resumes and cover letters that read well and are engaging.
AI Can Limit Personal Growth
AI experts and creators repeatedly tell us that AI is meant to support, not replace, the human factor. But with AI doing the heavy lifting, it’s easy to see how some skills won’t be developed.
Modern-day job seekers won’t have to wrestle with a bullet point or work experience that needs improvement. Gone are the days of brainstorming a better resume headline to find one that engages in one short line.
While that may sound like a benefit, reliance on AI can stifle creativity and personal growth, limiting opportunities for hiring managers who value individual creativity and unique narratives.
AI Has the Potential for Bias
Lastly, AI can inadvertently introduce bias. Algorithms are only as unbiased as their programming allows.
For example, the software might favor specific keywords, experiences, or qualifications over others, potentially sidelining equally deserving candidates.
Not only that, but predictive analysis can eliminate exceptional candidates based on irrelevant factors long before a hiring manager ever looks at their resume.
Navigate the Impact of AI on Your Job Search
As machine learning continues to grow, it’s essential that job seekers grow with it.
The key is understanding when and how AI impacts your job search and then embracing it as a tool, rather than a replacement for dedicated and organized effort on your part.