Algorithms used in application tracking software discriminate. It’s what they’re programmed to do. For hopeful job seekers, this could mean automatic rejection for a dream job without ever knowing the reason why.
The good news is citizens of EU member states will soon have a way to demand explanations of the decisions algorithms made about them.
EU regulations on algorithmic decision-making.
From 2018, new provisions to the data protection law called the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will govern against computer programs making decisions on their own.
The regulations ban decisions “based solely on automated processing, including profiling, which produces an adverse legal effect concerning the data subject or significantly affects him or her.”
In other words, algorithms and other programs aren’t allowed to make negative decisions about people on their own.
The ‘right to an explanation.’
Additionally, candidates would have the right to ‘an explanation of the decision’ reached after algorithmic assessment.
How exactly the new provisions will be interpreted and enforced remains to be seen. However, despite all the recent media hype about a future digital workforce, its unlikely robots will be replacing your HR department any time soon.
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