News Release: HR GO and University of Kent get go ahead from Innovate UK to investigate full potential of AI and machine learning to revolutionise UK recruitment

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HR GO, one of the UK’s leading recruitment companies, and the University of Kent have been successful in a joint application for a knowledge transfer partnership (KTP) from Innovate UK, the UK’s innovation agency. 

The award for £93,177 will provide half the cost of a two-year research project exploring how technology can better match roles with clients, including improving the feedback job seekers receive. HR GO will match fund the grant, resulting in a total project budget of £186,350. 

KTPs aim to help businesses to improve their competitiveness and productivity through the better use of knowledge, technology and skills within the UK knowledge base.  

John Parkinson, Chief Information Officer, HR GO, said: “We are delighted to have been successful in our application to UKRI for a knowledge transfer partnership (KTP) with the University of Kent. 

“This project will develop innovative AI models and systems to deliver feedback, scoring and matching of candidates at scale. At present, we receive over 500,000 applications for work each year for roles across all sectors, and across the whole of the UK.


“These AI models will power a semi-automated communications process to deliver enhanced feedback to candidates whilst helping HR GO’s clients ensure they find the best possible candidates to meet their needs.” 

The project team is now in the process of hiring an associate, who will be delivering the project over the two years. In addition to being tasked with analysing millions of points of HR GO data, they will consider all aspects of machine learning and AI development, from ethics to avoiding bias.  

Dr Anna Jordanous, senior lecturer at the University of Kent's School of Computing and co-lead of the project said: “This is a fascinating opportunity to work with complex real-life data. There are multiple interesting technical challenges to tackle, and it is exciting to see how research knowledge can be applied to make a real difference to recruitment candidates and clients.” 

HR GO has previously worked with Dr Jordanous to review potential machine learning solutions which could be deployed to automate contractor candidate role matching, as well as having sponsored the Kent HR Network and offered placements for students through the University of Kent’s Employability Points Scheme. 

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For more information, including media interview requests, please contact Lee Winter at Pillory Barn by email: or mobile: 07984 813911. 


HR GO plc is an independent family-owned Group founded in Dartford, Kent, in 1957 by Mrs Betty Parkinson. It provides recruitment, human resources, IT and digital services. HR GO Recruitment places permanent and temporary staff for a wide range of clients across Kent and the UK.  It also has digital and recruitment operations in Wroclaw, Poland, and a recruitment office in Sydney, Australia. Headquartered in Ashford, Kent, HR GO plc has expanded through joint ventures, acquisitions and organic growth. It employs 260 permanent staff and places up to 10,000 temps a week from 26 offices nationwide. Annual turnover is £176 million. 


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The University of Kent is a leading UK university producing world-class research, rated internationally excellent and leading the way in many fields of study. Its 20,000 students are based at campuses and centres in Canterbury, Medway, Brussels and Paris. 

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Innovate UK drives productivity and economic growth by supporting businesses to develop and realise the potential of new ideas. 

We connect businesses to the partners, customers and investors that can help them turn ideas into commercially successful products and services and business growth. 

We fund business and research collaborations to accelerate innovation and drive business investment into R&D. Our support is available to businesses across all economic sectors, value chains and UK regions. 

Innovate UK is part of UK Research and Innovation.

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