Shifting Gears in Plastics Recruitment: The Rise of AI

The plastics industry is in the middle of some big transformations thanks to new technologies and shifting customer needs. And in the midst of these changes, plastic industry leaders have a tough job on their hands. Why? They need to find and hang on to the best talent out there. 

According to a report by the World Economic Forum, we could be looking at a global skilled labor shortage of 85.2 million by 2025. This is a huge challenge, especially for industries like plastics. As a result, the traditional ways of recruiting might not cut it anymore.

This is where artificial intelligence (AI) comes into the picture. AI is no longer just a futuristic concept. It’s a powerful tool that’s shaking up the way we handle recruitment. To put it in the words of Sarah Brennan, a Talent Acquisition Leader at Dow Chemical Company, “AI is not about replacing human recruiters, but rather augmenting their capabilities and enabling them to focus on higher-value activities like building relationships and engaging with candidates”.

From highlighting the increasing curiosity around AI and discussing its impact to revealing popular AI tools and sharing practical advice on integrating AI into your recruitment process, we’ve got it all covered. We’re going to take you on an insightful ride through the groundbreaking role AI plays in talent acquisition within the plastics industry.

Growing Interest in AI for Plastic Recruitment

When we look at the many ways AI making a mark across different sectors, it’s clear that the plastics industry isn’t being left behind. One area where AI has considerable potential is talent acquisition.

Finding qualified professionals in an intensely competitive labor market is a hard-hitting task. Here, AI appears as a promising ally. AI-based tools designed for recruitment can take a lot of the difficulty out of the process. They can sift through large volumes of resumes quickly, accurately match applicant qualifications with job requirements, and even predict an individual’s possible future performance.

The real beauty comes to light when AI and human touch points work together. With AI handling the heavy-duty tasks, we get the freedom to focus on what we’re best at: building relationships and engaging with candidates. It’s this combination that’s stimulating interest in AI for talent acquisition.

The rising use of AI highlights its growing importance in this industry. While some might see AI as just the latest trend, it’s actually making a big impact. More companies are discovering the benefits of AI, showing it’s not just a passing phase – it’s here to stay.

Impact of AI in Plastics Recruitment: Gains and Losses

Artificial intelligence is making waves in the plastics recruitment industry. Like a double-edged sword, it brings considerable benefits, helping us to streamline recruitment processes. But at the same time, it presents new challenges that need to be addressed. Let’s take a balanced view and look at both the gains and losses.


  • Speed and Efficiency: AI tools, like automated resume screening, save time by processing applications faster than a human could. For instance, AI can reduce resume screening time by up to 75%. This efficiency enables us to respond quicker to candidates and fill open roles promptly.
  • Accuracy: AI algorithms can accurately match a candidate’s qualifications with job requirements, minimizing the risk of missing suitable applicants or forwarding unqualified ones. Through advanced ranking systems, AI ensures only the most suitable candidates land on our shortlist.
  • Improved Candidate Experience: AI can automate parts of the communication process, providing prompt updates and feedback to candidates. By reducing wait times for feedback, candidates feel more engaged and valued throughout the recruitment process.
  • Predictive Analytics: AI can use available data to predict future outcomes, such as a candidate’s potential success in a role or their likelihood to accept an offer. This predictive ability helps us make informed recruiting decisions and fosters a proactive recruitment approach.
  • Diversity and Inclusion: AI can help to eliminate unconscious bias from the recruitment process, promoting fairness and diversity. By assessing candidates based on their qualifications, rather than personal attributes, we can ensure a level playing field for all applicants.
  • Cost Efficiency: With faster, more accurate recruitment processes, AI can lead to cost savings in the long run. Reduced time-to-hire and increased quality of hire can significantly reduce the financial impact of vacant roles and turnover.
  • Scalability: AI can handle a large volume of applications without sacrificing performance, making it significantly more scalable than manual methods. Whether you’re hiring for one position or one hundred, AI tools can manage the workload efficiently. 


  • Depersonalization: Automated processes, while efficient, might make the recruitment process feel less personal. This could potentially alienate candidates who value personal interactions in the recruitment process. It’s essential to strike a balance between AI and human interaction to ensure candidates feel valued and maintain a strong candidate-employer relationship.
  • Data Privacy: AI tools use large amounts of personal data, which can raise privacy concerns. Candidates may be wary of sharing personal information due to potential breaches or misuse of data. Ensuring robust data security measures are in place is crucial to protect candidate information, maintain trust, and promote a transparent recruitment process.
  • Complexity: Implementing AI tools requires a level of technical expertise and can be complex. Small businesses, in particular, might need additional resources or training to navigate these challenges. Without proper technical support, the potential benefits of AI could be overshadowed by implementation difficulties.
  • Dependence on Data: The effectiveness of AI relies on the quality and quantity of data. Inadequate or incorrect data can lead to misguided outputs and decisions. This could potentially result in inefficient recruitment processes and missed opportunities for finding the right candidates.
  • Bias in AI: If not carefully managed, AI could potentially replicate existing biases in data. This could inadvertently lead to discriminatory hiring practices. Ensuring the algorithm is trained on diverse, unbiased data can help mitigate this risk and uphold the principles of equal opportunity employment.

Job Displacement Fears: The integration of AI might create fears around job displacement amongst employees. Such fears can impact morale and productivity. Clear communication about the purpose and benefits of AI can help to alleviate such concerns and promote a positive organizational culture.

Understanding these gains and losses allows us to make the most of AI while addressing potential challenges proactively. As we continue to explore AI’s potential, we’re excited about what the future holds for recruitment in the plastics industry.

AI Tools Used in Plastics Recruitment

As the use of AI in recruitment grows, a selection of AI tools has surfaced, promising to change the way we handle talent acquisition in the plastics industry. Let’s explore some major tools:

Chatbots: AI-driven chatbots can automate the initial communication with candidates, answering queries and gathering basic information. For instance, a chatbot could engage with applicants on our website, responding to FAQs and collecting essential details like their qualifications and experience.

Automated Scheduling Tools: Tools like Clara and can automate the scheduling of interviews, reducing the back-and-forth emails typically needed to find suitable times for all parties. These tools can sync with our calendars and automatically set up appointments based on our availability.

Candidate Screening Software: AI-powered software like Ideal and Pymetrics can screen resumes, shortlisting the best fits based on job requirements. These tools can process large numbers of applications rapidly, ensuring we don’t miss out on potential fits.

Interviewing Technology: AI tools like HireVue use video interviewing technology to assess candidates’ language use, tone, and facial expressions during interviews. This provides insights into candidates’ soft skills and cultural fit.

Predictive Analysis Tools: Tools such as Ascendify and Koru predict a candidate’s likely success in a role based on their skills, experience, and behavioral traits. These predictions can guide our hiring decisions.

Candidate Engagement Tools: Platforms like Brazen and Paradox Olivia use AI to keep candidates engaged throughout the recruitment process. These tools can send automated emails or text messages to candidates, keeping them informed about their application status.

Job Advertising Platforms: AI-driven platforms such as ClickIQ and PandoLogic help optimize our job ads. They automatically distribute ads across various job boards and social media channels to ensure they reach our target audience.

Skills Testing Software: Tools like Vervoe and Codility use AI to automatically grade skills tests, providing an objective assessment of a candidate’s abilities. For instance, we might use these tools to assess technical proficiency or problem-solving skills for engineering roles in the plastics industry.

These tools represent just a glimpse of the vast potential AI holds for the plastics recruitment sector. By integrating these tools into our recruitment process, we can streamline our operations, make more informed decisions, and ultimately find the best talent for our industry.

10 Tips for Integrating AI Tools in Plastics Recruitment

Integrating AI into your recruitment process may seem challenging, but with the right approach, it can be a smooth transition. Here are ten tips to help you make the most out of AI tools in plastics recruitment:

  1. Start Small

Begin by integrating AI into one aspect of your recruitment process. For example, you might start with an AI chatbot on your website to handle initial candidate queries. Once you’re comfortable with that, gradually incorporate more AI tools.

  1. Define Clear Objectives

Know what you want to achieve with AI. Do you want to speed up candidate screening, improve the candidate experience, or boost the efficiency of interviews? Defining your objectives will help you choose the right AI tools.

  1. Choose User-Friendly Tools

Opt for AI tools that are easy to use and understand. For instance, an automated scheduling tool with a simple, intuitive interface can make the transition much smoother for your team.

  1. Ensure Data Security
    When using AI tools that handle candidate data, make sure they comply with data security regulations such as GDPR. Tools that prioritize data encryption and secure storage will help protect candidate information.
  2. Provide Training

Your team may need training to effectively use AI tools. Provide ample learning resources and training sessions to ensure everyone can confidently and competently use the new tools.

  1. Maintain a Human Touch

Despite the automation AI brings, remember the importance of human interaction. For example, while a chatbot can handle initial queries, a personal email or phone call can be more appropriate for delivering important updates or decisions.

  1. Monitor Performance

Regularly assess the impact of AI on your recruitment process. Are you noticing an improvement in efficiency? Are candidates responding positively? Tools with built-in analytics can offer valuable insights.

  1. Stay Updated

The field of AI is dynamic, with new tools and advancements surfacing regularly. Stay informed about the latest developments to understand how they might benefit your recruitment process.

  1. Seek Expert Advice

If you’re unsure about implementing AI, consider consulting an expert or professional service. They can guide you in choosing the most suitable tools for your needs and ensure a smooth integration.

  1. Encourage Feedback

Seek feedback from your team and candidates on their experiences with the AI tools. Their insights can help you tweak and improve your AI-enabled recruitment process.

The integration of AI into your recruitment process can be transformative. With these tips in mind, you can harness the power of AI to refine your recruitment strategy and find the best talent for the plastics industry.


Making room for artificial intelligence in recruitment is like inviting a fresh breeze into the world of plastics industry hiring. It’s an open door to exciting possibilities, amplifying our reach, refining our choices, and nurturing the overall candidate journey.

It’s important to note that at the core of recruitment, it’s about people connecting with people. AI merely plays a supportive role, enhancing our effectiveness while allowing us to focus on what truly matters – making meaningful connections.

Intrigued by the magic AI can spin in your plastic recruitment process? Reach out to us at Plastic Executive Search.  We’re not just hiring; we’re renewing connections in the plastics industry with the power of AI. Together, let’s step into the future of recruitment, crafting an approach that’s both smart and human in all the right ways!

Ed Keil

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