- Artificial intelligence is about to transform the job search.
- Research confirms the value of using AI in your job search.
- At the very least, AI can be of immediate practical help with your resume.
A research team led by Emma van Inwegen of MIT's Sloan School of Management studied 480,948 job seekers. A random 50% of this group was offered an AI writing tool for help with their resumes. The other half did not receive such assistance. The AI tool offered suggestions for fixing spelling and improving grammar, punctuation, word usage, phrase overuse, tone, and style.
Job applicants using AI received 7.8% more offers. Their starting salaries were 8.4% higher.
What does the research mean for your job campaign?
When you send out your resume and cover letter, it goes to two intelligent audiences. The first intelligent audience is a computer. Computers can identify spelling and grammar errors in your submission and push your candidacy down the selection list.
Your second audience is humans. There is a cliché’: Don’t judge a book by its cover. It is a commonplace because we all do it. We all make some judgments by appearance. Typos, spelling errors, and grammar mistakes may be evaluated as signs of an applicant's ability to pay attention to details. “If she does such a poor job in her cover letter, why should I expect her to be more careful with my business?”
When English Is Not Your Primary Language
Well-crafted resumes and cover letters can be a make-or-break matter for job applicants from non-English speaking countries. The cost of an annual subscription to an AI system pales in comparison to the professional fees for retaining a human editor to review every letter that goes out.
Summary and Conclusions
The MIT Sloan research is an indication of how AI can be of immediate practical help to job candidates. In fact, as a result of this study, our company decided to provide a one-year subscription to an AI program for our corporate-sponsored outplacement candidates of client companies.
Most word-processing software programs contain internal spell-checkers. This service is useful, but most applications do not check grammar or punctuation. They seldom suggest new phrases or sentences. You want full-service AI.
If you are an outplacement candidate and your outplacement provider is not offering you such AI service, you should bring the matter up with your former employer. You now have empirical evidence that such programs can shorten your job search.
If your company has not provided you with outplacement support, you should select your own AI system. (Click here for a recent review of AI writing assistants.)
This blog post is the tip of an iceberg on how artificial intelligence will change your job search. In addition to AI’s role assisting in writing your resume and cover letters, it is possible to use AI sources such as ChatGPT to draft responses to predictable interview questions: Why are you interested in working for our company? What are your greatest strengths? What are your greatest weaknesses?
ChatGPT can provide ideas. Assume your competitors will be using the same tools to answer the same interview questions. Balance the insights of artificial intelligence against common sense and integrity.
D.L. Blumberg. “Job Seekers With AI-Boosted Resumes More Likely to be Hired.” MIT SLOAN MANAGEMENT, May 19, 2023, https://mitsloan.mit.edu/ideas-made-to-matter/job-seekers-ai-boosted-resumes-more-likely-to-be-hired
E. Van Inwegen, Z.T. Munykwa, J.J. Horton. “Algorithmic Writing Assistance on Jobseekers’ Resumes Increases Hires.” National Bureau of Economic Research. January 2023, http://nber.org/papers/w30886