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ProjectBlog: Women Leading The AI Industry: “Unless women pave their own way, it’s hard for them to even get…

Blog: Women Leading The AI Industry: “Unless women pave their own way, it’s hard for them to even get…


I think opportunity is needed to encourage more women in the AI industry. Unless women pave their own way, it’s hard for them to even get access to these jobs. There is an extreme bias toward men in AI and people in power positions need to be aware of that bias and actively recruit women to take those jobs.

As part of my series about the women leading the Artificial Intelligence industry, I had the pleasure of interviewing Ladan Davia, Founder and CEO of Beeya, which she founded when she was 22 years old. She entered the online job space as a start up against the big industry players but stood out by creating technology that the others didn’t have.Today, she is committed to using AI to eliminate bias in the recruiting industry.


Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you share with us the ‘backstory” of how you decided to pursue this career path?

I fell into tech and AI completely by mistake. I was pursuing a career in television and wanted to get out of the industry. When I was using different online job sites to find a job, I realized how awful the experience was. The process didn’t work, and that’s because of the keyword matching these websites use. I wanted a website that would provide accurate matches based on my resume and qualifications. This is what started my journey to starting my company, and realizing that I could create a product that would aggregate with intelligence, by using AI.

What lessons can others learn from your story?

To think outside the box. People were surprised when I wanted to start a company in the online job space, because it’s so crowded. My answer to that was that yes, it’s crowded, but with the same concept over and over again. There are multiples of the same concept with a different logo, but nothing different that really solved a problem.

Can you tell our readers about the most interesting projects you are working on now?

The mission of our company is to take the bias out of job searching. The most interesting thing we are working on is the ability to predict which jobs are best for people based on their resume. I want our product to be able to read someone’s resume, understand their work history, and suggest career paths that they will be successful in. Perhaps ones they haven’t thought of.

What are the 5 things that most excite you about the AI industry? Why?

1) Accurate results. In my space specifically, AI has the ability to help HR professionals hire the right people, instead of feeling forced to hire anyone. The recruitment industry relies heavily on networking and referrals, but that often times leads to bad hires which costs a company a lot of time and money. AI will streamline that process.

2) Can provide service to customer faster. AI can provide customers with faster customer service by improving on services like chatbots. Chatbots are able to cater to customers 24 hours a day and will increasing productivity.

3) Better understanding of different markets.

4) Less mistakes overall. With AI, there is no room for human error.

5) Leads to more innovation.

What are the 5 things that concern you about the AI industry? Why?

1) Bias that we can’t see. AI only learns what you teach it. The more you feed it, the faster it learns. Although AI has the possibility to take bias out of different topics, it also could possibly form bias that we can’t see. This will depend heavily on who is programming it.

2) Stops people from thinking. Because AI will make things more efficient, it could cause people to become complacent. Relying on technology may result in people becoming lazy.

3) Possible layoffs. There are studies that say by 2025 46% of jobs will be replaced by AI. While I do think in the HR space AI can be used as a helpful addition to a human workforce, it is possible that the technology could advance and take over some of those jobs.

4) Takes human empathy out of situations.

5) Possibility that it won’t be used responsibly.

As you know, there is an ongoing debate between prominent scientists, (personified as a debate between Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg,) about whether advanced AI has the future potential to pose a danger to humanity. What is your position about this?

Yes, AI does have a potential to pose a danger to humanity. However, so do a lot of other things. I think AI is coming whether people like it or not so we have to prepare for it and use it responsibly. My hope is that AI will be used as a tool to help people do their jobs more efficiently instead of compete directly with humans.

What can be done to prevent such concerns from materializing? And what can be done to assure the public that there is nothing to be concerned about?

I think as long as motives are completely transparent, those concerns will not be an issue. I can only control myself and my company and I know that there is a great deal of responsibility when dealing with technology of this level. I am committed to staying transparent and letting the public know exactly what we are working on, how we are creating it, and why. Everyone wants to keep their IP safe, but there does need to be a level of transparency when it comes to AI.

How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world? Can you share a story?

I am trying to use my success with Beeya and my success with AI to bring job opportunities to those who don’t have them. Too often are there situations where people are educated, qualified, and ready to work but don’t have a network who can connect them to companies they want to work for. That should not be the case. Beeya is going to solve this issue by bringing equal opportunity to those who work for it.

As you know, there are not that many women in your industry. Can you share 3 things that you would you advise to other women in the AI space to thrive?

It is imperative that women enter the AI space because women naturally have 3 things that they are scientifically proven to be stronger in than men.

1) Empathy

2) Collaboration and flexibility

3) Ability to listen

It’s not to say that men don’t have these qualities, however women prove stronger in these areas. When AI is created, the person creating the technology teaches AI how to think and behave. Women leading this code and innovation is extremely important.

Can you advise what is needed to engage more women into the AI industry?

I think opportunity is needed to encourage more women in the AI industry. Unless women pave their own way, it’s hard for them to even get access to these jobs. There is an extreme bias toward men in AI and people in power positions need to be aware of that bias and actively recruit women to take those jobs.

What is your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share a story of how that had relevance to your own life?

“Everyone has their own timeline”. I don’t compete with anyone else but myself. We all have our own journey as humans we go on and everyone is on their own timeline. What might be working for someone else, might not work for me. Competing against yourself allows you to focus on what’s important instead listening to the noise that doesn’t matter.

You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. :-)

Less connecting on social media, more connection and interaction in real life :)

How can our readers follow you on social media?

Instagram, facebook, twitter: @beeyaofficial, @ladandavia

LinkedIn: @Beeya, @ladandavia

This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for joining us!

Source: Artificial Intelligence on Medium

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