Rise of the chatbots: Japanese firm requires recruits to know ChatGPT

New graduates are being tested on their ability to use the technology.
Loukia Papadopoulos
A laptop keyboard and OpenAI logo displayed on a phone screen.
A laptop keyboard and OpenAI logo displayed on a phone screen.

Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto/Getty Images 

A Japanese fintech firm called LayerX Inc. has made it compulsory for new recruits to know how to use chatbots ChatGPT and Notion AI. It is even testing them on their knowledge and skill levels, according to Bloomberg on Wednesday.

A recent job ad for new graduates released by the Tokyo-based firm stated it was making it mandatory for recruits to be tested on their use of the technology.

“We recognize that ChatGPT is not perfect,” said Takaya Ishiguro, chief human resources officer at LayerX, in an interview. “However, it is also dangerous to be too afraid to utilize new technology.”

Recruits are evaluated during their entry assessments on their ability to give prompts to ChatGPT and reviewed on whether they initiate the process adequately. They are also asked to conduct research to pinpoint the technology’s limitations.

LayerX, which focuses on promoting digitizing business transactions, was awarded 5.5 billion yen ($41 million) in a recent round of Series A funding backed by MUFG’s venture capital arm and Mitsui & Co. The company told Bloomberg it was not expecting an “immediate impact” on profits by using the chatbots but wants to hire about 20 new recruits a year who are experts in the technology.

Jumping on new technologies

“It’s important to jump on new technologies quickly,” added Ishiguro. “I think the candidates are falling behind from the trend if they haven’t tried it at this point.”

Candidates will also be expected to assess the accuracy of ChatGPT’s output, said Ishiguro. This is especially problematic as the chatbot has indicated an ability to confidently give answers even when they are wrong. Ishiguro explained to Bloomberg that he wanted the company’s employees to spot and adjust to new technologies even if they don’t always catch on.

But the new tools are not popular everywhere. For now, many Wall Street banks have restricted their implementation and use, while schools in places like New York City have outright banned it as reports surface of students using the tech to cheat on school work

In Japan, Softbank Group Corp and banks, including Mizuho Financial Group Inc. and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc., have also banned the technology in the last few months. There have also been fears of the new tools reducing workforces.