Artificial intelligence (AI) is becoming more commonly used everywhere you turn, including the workplace. Many companies and employees are using this technology to perform mundane tasks and make their work easier overall. AI is also changing how organizations operate and make decisions. It presents many opportunities for organizations, such as enhanced workflows, streamlined operations, and improved customer experiences.
AI is useful for many purposes, but it is important to be aware of the potential problems and risks when using AI in the workplace. For example, many employers use AI systems to streamline the hiring and onboarding processes as well as to automate many HR functions. While this technology can make reviewing resumes easier and more efficient, it also presents certain risks. AI algorithms can add unintentional bias without the employer even being aware of the risk. Another consideration: some AI tools can monitor employee activities, which can trigger privacy issues.
There are also limitations and exposures that employers need to consider when using AI tools. Implementing workplace policies can help ensure employers and employees alike understand the potential risks associated with the use of AI tools. Let’s consider what risks might exist with the many, varied AI uses.
Possible Risks of AI Implementation
- Discrimination and bias. AI tools can be biased, as they are trained on data that may reflect certain prejudices. Biased outcomes can potentially lead to discrimination against those looking for jobs, loans, or benefits.
- Privacy law violations and data breaches. AI tools can track people’s movements and capture vast amounts of data, which may include personal information that is used without consent. Did the tool developer gather the appropriate consents? AI tools often use significant volumes of sensitive information, which could be exposed and result in a data breach.
- Cybersecurity risks. Like any online entity, AI tools are vulnerable to cyberattacks. A bad actor could alter algorithms or potentially take control over a part or an entire AI system with the express purpose of wreaking havoc on a business.
- Legal and regulatory risks. When an employer uses AI for decision making, it is still liable for any resultant consequences. AI isn’t a substitute for good analysis and business judgment. Your business may also be liable for your use of any AI tools that do not comply with local, state, or federal guidelines, or you may be liable for any damages caused because of their use.
- Reputation damage. A negative incident involving AI-assisted tools, such as a data breach, can damage your reputation in a big way. Add decreased sales, the loss of loyal customers, bad publicity, and potential lawsuits, and you have a real mess on your hands.
How to Create a Policy
AI policies will differ from one company to another, but here are some elements you may want to consider in your workplace policy:
- Purpose and scope. Clearly spell out the policy’s purpose, what it covers, how it will be implemented, and who will administer the policy
- Fairness. How will AI systems be designed and/or used to ensure they are not discriminatory? How will your company address potential bias?
- Accountability. How will employees be informed about the use of AI systems? How will they be held accountable for any decisions made in part by AI systems?
- Privacy and security. Will employee data be included in the AI system? If so, how will the data be protected in terms of privacy and security? How will employers comply with security laws?
- Training and education. How will employees be trained on AI systems? How will employers ensure that workers understand the risks and benefits of AI systems?
- Monitoring. While nobody likes a micromanager, AI use will need to be monitored to ensure it is being used correctly. How will employers do so while making sure that AI systems are being used in accordance with their policy?
Contact Our Frisco Employment Law Attorneys Today
AI technology is revolutionizing the workplace. As your organizations embraces this technology, it is essential to establish proper workplace policies that can help protect your company against the risks and potential pitfalls. If you need help establishing a workplace AI policy, we can help.