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  • Writer's picturejana tulloch

Harnessing the Power of AI for HR: A Guide for Small Business Owners

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is transforming various aspects of business operations, and Human Resources (HR) is no exception. For small business owners, leveraging AI can streamline HR processes, improve efficiency, and enhance the employee experience. This blog is for those who are a one-person show and overseeing HR in addition to everything else that needs to be done to run the business. Have no fear - leveraging AI can be a huge timesaver!

AI brain helping with HR tasks

One of the most accessible AI platforms is ChatGPT. It's free for the base version (which is a pretty good version on it's own). Sign up for an account, and start by using simple prompts such as asking, "How can I keep my employees happy?" It will generate a list of ideas for you. You can even be more specific in your prompt, and ask "How can I keep my employees happy? I'm a small business with limited funds, and I have 10 employees who work in a warehouse."

On your own, without having to purchase software that has AI abilities incorporated, here are some ideas on how it can save you time:

1. Streamlining Recruitment & Onboarding

  • Upload to ChatGPT the ten best resumes you received in response to a job posting, and upload the job description itself, and ask it to rank the applicants accordingly.

  • Upload a job description to ChatGPT, and ask it to create interview questions based on the requirements of the role.

  • You can take it one step further and ask it to create a personalized onboarding plan for the position you're hiring for, by uploading the job description and the incumbent's resume. You can also ask it to make training and development recommendations for the individual.

  • You can also ask ChatGPT to create onboarding checklists for you, based on the State/Province you reside in and the position you're hiring for.

If you've got the cash to invest in an HRIS / ATS system, many have built in automations that leverage AI, such as candidate sourcing ability, resume screening, and chatbots that can communicate with candidates.

2. Improving Employee Engagement

Employee engagement is a key element in helping retain your team, as well as contributing to higher levels of productivity. AI can help small businesses keep their employees engaged by providing insights and tools to foster a positive work environment:

  • You can upload employee survey results into ChatGPT and AI can analyze the feedback and identify themes and areas for improvement.

  • ChatGPT can help you tailor messages to your team, or help you flesh out communications. If you struggle with framing messaging in the right way, AI has your back.

  • As mentioned above, use AI to help you brainstorm ideas to keep your team happy; to help manage their performance, or to even help you develop your managerial skills.

3. Simplifying Administrative Tasks

If you're still using paper to track time off, changes in compensation, or employee history, you may want to consider finding an HRIS to automate many of these tasks, such as BambooHR or FolksHR. Many HRIS systems have built in platforms for hiring, onboarding, and performance management as well. Some even have payroll integrations. However, even without an HRIS, AI can help.

  • Compliance can be tricky for employers. Using AI to generate compliance checklists based on your location, such as required law posters or paperwork, can be very helpful. It is important to note that unpaid versions of ChatGPT may not have the most up-to-date information.

  • It can help list out vendors who provide health benefits, or resource sites for various topics. Not sure how much vacation an employee is entitled to? Ask ChatGPT where to find the information and it'll point you in the right direction.

  • Creating templates has never been easier! Whatever you might need, it can be created in a few seconds with AI.


AI offers numerous benefits for small businesses looking to optimize their HR processes, and you don't need to be an AI expert by any means! It can be a great time-saver for getting things started. As with all things HR, it is recommended that you let AI be a starting point for you, with further edits to its output tailored to your specific needs and as per local employment laws and regulations.


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