Human Resources versus Industrial Psychology

Human Resources is going through a crisis that threatens the future of its profession. As society enters an era of advanced automation and artificial intelligence, the practicality of a human-run HR department is vanishing. In the past 5 months, Google Analytics has fired two of their last few Google Ethics researchers. If ethics are the only thing that is keeping technology from ruling over our lives more than it already does, then why do they keep firing the same executive position?  

We always imagine AI as an Ultron, a Matrix hoarder, and the reason why humans will go extinct. We forget that technology is a product that was made by humans. Technological solutions are valuable, and there are many cases where a digital solution is better than a human one–but this is not true 100% of the time. Humans need to know when to implement technological solutions and when to implement common sense. Human Resources departments shouldn’t die just because it’s hard to interact with another human being. Instead, companies should take care of their HR professionals and equip them with what they need to do their job well.

Sociological studies of the current behavioral patterns inside industries collect the best and most successful data for templates required by Human Resources. What they don’t collect, however, is the data to offer Human Resources departments mental health and support. HR professionals have scored the lowest on overall mental health. 

A solution would be to take the collected data from existing studies and adapt it to HR departments. Or even create a study solely based in HR departments to collect unique data. Study patterns inside the profession and then change them for the better. This way, technology can be used to greatest effect without removing the human element from Human Resources. People say that “HR people are just mean,”, but in reality, they are just as repressed and tired as you. The question is, would you rather talk to a heartless person or a heartless machine?


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