“Today, right now, you have more power at your fingertips than entire generations that came before you.” – Common, Microsoft AI commercials

Artificial Intelligence is not only the future, it is the present. AI is in almost every facet of our daily lives – from the items that show up on our “commonly purchased” section of the grocery store app to the types of advertisements that show up in social media news feeds. AI brings convenience and speed to our tech-based experiences, in many cases improving quality of life. More than that, businesses are using AI and machine learning to solve social issues, preserve history, improve food supply and create a better future.

However, inclusive AI can be challenging to get right when only 22% of AI professionals across the globe are female. “An AI gender skill gap this expansive has critical implications for both women and society. The number of workers with AI skills grew 190% globally between 2015 and 2017, and for good reason. Six of the 15 fastest-growing jobs of the past year call for these skills and AI specialists are becoming some of the highest paid experts across tech…The fear? Tech that’s built solely from the perspective of one gender or ethnic group may ultimately disregard or discount the needs and values of another,” according to Working Together.

If the workforce that develops AI is homogeneous, how do we create AI that is inclusive? “AI can help us overcome biases instead of perpetuating them, with guidance from the humans who design, train, and refine its systems,” states MITSloan Management Review. “The people working with the technology must do a much better job of building inclusion and diversity into AI design by using the right data to train AI systems to be inclusive and thinking about gender roles and diversity when developing bots and other applications that engage with the public.”

When it comes to the makeup of a company or organization, you have to realize that AI cannot create a diverse and inclusive workforce on its own. “The foundation of driving D&I policies in a company needs to be a realization of the fact that a diverse and heterogeneous workforce provides a business edge, helps expedite innovation and positively impacts the bottom-line. Technological tools need to be backed with progressive vision and values that champion what it means to be truly diverse,” explains People Matters.

Fortunately, data-driven AI technology that has made our jobs as recruiters and hiring departments can be changed and modified easier than human bias and tendencies. Our gut leads some of our decisions and we can’t always explain why we made the choice we made. Data and algorithms provide insight into unintentional bias that might be produced in AI. Modifications to hiring technology can remove the chance that a company might unintentionally leave out candidates and potential hires that might have been overlooked by human resources.

AI is the present and future. The use of AI in recruiting should be used strategically to attain the right talent while also alleviating some of the tasks that slow down the hiring process. Ultimately, we want to provide a better candidate experience and for employers to have an easier time hiring the “right” person.