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Radhika Panjwani is a freelance writer from Toronto.

  • Jobseekers must verify to ensure their individual voice shines through the AI-suggested text in résumés and cover letters.
  • Experts suggest jobseekers use a skills-first mindset, given how AI is poised to disrupt jobs and sectors.
  • AI-powered software has been helping jobseekers find work in two regions in Ontario.

As a virtual career coach, generative artificial intelligence can read résumés and cover letters to critique and optimize them with the right keywords, curate relevant jobs from multiple sites, highlight significant and noteworthy aspects of the applicant’s career, compare education, experience and skills against the requirements in a job posting and so much more.

“We believe responsible implementation of generative AI will be critical in the success of closing the gap between employers and jobseekers,” said Jeffrey Doucet, chief executive officer of Thrive Career Wellness Platform, a Toronto-headquartered company using AI to offer a one-stop digital solution for people looking to advance their careers. “In the near term, we expect to see [AI-enabled] platforms continue to automate and drastically decrease the time it takes jobseekers to build their résumé, understand skill sets and apply to jobs.”

He added that AI software is also making it easier for individuals with disabilities, accessibility and language challenges, to navigate the broader employment ecosystem.

Their proprietary platform uses artificial intelligence to respond to jobseekers’ questions such as: What kind of a job am I qualified for? How many such jobs are available in my city? What skills am I missing?

Thrive uses AI to analyze résumés and layer on other features such identifying a skills gap to offer learning recommendations or make recommendations based on labour-market demand, said Mr. Doucet. A recent university graduate, for example, may be adept at building a resume on their computer and navigating job portals. But they may require guidance optimizing their resume, improving their interviewing skills or even figuring out what they want to do with the skills that they have.

Currently, Thrive runs a jobseeker portal in the EmployNext consortium in Kingston-Pembroke and the Kitchener-Waterloo-Barrie regions in Ontario. Since its launch in the Kingston-Pembroke area three months ago, Thrive has helped more than 3,000 jobseekers, said Mr. Doucet. He added the platform has also found takers in the private sector where it offers outplacement support and more. Currently, it is only available to those who sign up through EmployNext and employees at a few private companies.

AI’s strength

Gen AI’s superpower lies in its ability to synthesize data from many sources and deliver personalized insights and content in a human-understandable way, said Rohan Rajiv, director of project management at LinkedIn.

He said LinkedIn recently launched an AI-powered tool — currently available to premium members — that analyzes [LinkedIn] profiles of applicants by highlighting missing skills. It can also suggest potential contacts who can help with a job search, help craft personalized messages and introductions and prepare for job interviews.

LinkedIn’s tool can also help recruiters by automating tactical tasks such as writing job descriptions and thus free up time for the more critical people-centric, and strategic parts of their jobs like building relationships with candidates, he said. He added LinkedIn’s new AI-powered enhancements are geared to helping candidates get a leg up in the job search. For instance, when potential candidates click on a job posting, they will be able to assess if a particular job is a good fit and the AI will help identify the best way for them to position themselves. And it will also provide relevant details about the company so that the applicant can educate themselves about the industry.

“I think it’s safe to assume AI will start to change how entire jobs, functions and sectors do work,” Mr. Rajiv said. “The skills people need to do jobs are expected to change by 65 per cent by 2030, and this will be largely fuelled by AI. The best way to manage the incoming changes to your work is with a skills-first mindset and an increased emphasis on soft skills and the more human elements of our work.”

Here are three pieces of advice Mr. Rajiv suggests for those planning to use AI tools for their job search:

  • Educate yourself on AI: Whether it’s for a job search or the interview process, learn how you can get the most out of AI. He said LinkedIn has 300 AI LinkedIn Learning courses to help. AI is a top skill in demand among hiring managers, so showing a potential hiring manager you have an interest in gaining new skills and know the basics of AI will help.
  • Don’t over-rely on AI: Done well, generative AI can provide help like an assistant or a coach, but it’s critical the applicant/user remain in the driver’s seat.
  • Review before hitting send: Assess, evaluate and edit before publishing or sending. This will help ensure the writing is both accurate and authentic to your voice.

What I’m reading around the web

  • This piece in Fortune explores challenges with Google search’s effectiveness. It examines issues such as spam links, SEO manipulation and the impact of AI algorithms on search results.
  • This blog post on The Muse warns of the pros and cons of using generative AI tools like ChatGPT for job seekers and suggests 35 prompts to get the most out of it.
  • Leaders at top companies have trusted executives who possess strategic foresight, shows an analysis of a survey of more than 2,000 global executives by pwc.

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