‘Exact same cover letters word for word’: Career consultant says Gen Z are misusing AI

Gen Z, defined as those born between 1996 and 2012, are the true digital natives who utilize AI technology extensively, from assisting with school assignments to planning trips. However, reliance on AI tools like ChatGPT for crafting job-related documents might be counterproductive.

#### Insights from a Career Expert

Shoshana Davis, a career specialist and the founder of Fairy Job Mother highlighted concerns in dialogue with CNBC Make It. Davis noted that she communicates with companies employing significant numbers of Gen Z workers annually and has identified an alarming trend: excessive reliance on AI for job applications.

#### The Core Issue

The predominant issue is that many Gen Z applicants submit nearly identical cover letters and job application responses generated by AI, particularly ChatGPT. This has led to concerns among employers about the authenticity and individuality of these applications. Davis points out that a noticeable percentage of such applications tend not to effectively stand out due to the repetitive nature of AI-generated content.

#### Statistical Evidence

A considerable portion of job seekers, about 45% according to a Canva survey, employ AI to draft or enhance their resumes. In particular, a February Grammarly survey revealed that 61% of Gen Z workers heavily depend on generative AI for workplace tasks, more so than any other generation.

#### Recommendations

Davis advocates for the use of AI but warns against its misuse. Replicating generic responses can diminish a candidate's prospects. According to a Resume Genius survey, over half of the hiring managers were averse to AI-crafted resumes, viewing them as potential red flags.

#### An Example of Misuse

Davis shared an anecdote where an employer received numerous identical answers to a specific question about recent favorite fitness-related product launches. All responses inaccurately mentioned a Peloton campaign, which was actually several years old, indicating a probable reliance on outdated or incorrect AI-generated information.

AI should be seen as an assistant for drafting and refining documents, not as a full substitute for personal input. Emphasizing this, Michelle Reisdorf, from recruitment firm Robert Half, also supported the idea that while AI can enhance a document's quality, the uniqueness and personal touch of the applicant should always be at the forefront. This balance ensures the creation of authentic and engaging job application documents. 

Davis herself uses AI to structure documents and brainstorm ideas, but she emphasizes the importance of not merely copying and pasting AI-generated answers, thus maintaining a personal and genuine approach.  

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