Hiring Guide: How To Reduce Bias While Hiring?

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Several types of research conducted have revealed that the hiring process of organizations is often biased and unfair. Be the metric of internal bias be a candidate’s gender, ethnicity, race, or any other factor, this is not a good sign for hirers as it is a stepping stone to toxic work culture and the simplest way to lose out on extremely talented candidates.

If an organization wants to keep their hiring process clean and free of bias, they need to hold the management, hiring team and every individual involved in the process accountable to help them learn to disassociate their personal prejudices towards a certain group or groups to acquire a candidate that is the best fit for the organization.

In this blog, we will address the 7 most efficient ways in which an organization can marginally reduce its bias towards potential candidates during the process of hiring.

Without any further delay, let’s start right away.

What is the harm caused by hiring bias?

Hiring bias can cause more damage to your organization than you think. Holding and putting up with hiring bias in an organization gives rise to a stream of consequences such as:

  1. Loss of reputation and goodwill in a tolerant society and egalitarian system.
  2. Losing out on highly skilled professionals who would have raked in fantastic results for your organization.
  3. Deviation from your mission and vision.
  4. In a world of cancel culture, the organization stands a great threat of being boycotted by candidates and the public is the bias is ever exposed.
  5. Your organization becomes blacklisted by hiring agencies who support the principle of inclusion and fairness, thereby diverting talented candidates to other organizations.
  6. Lower levels of employee satisfaction and happiness at their workplace.
  7. The risk of cultivating a toxic workplace culture is left unchecked.

7 practical ways to curb hiring bias in an organization:

If you suspect that your organization is subject to a biased hiring team or management, it is time to bring in positive change through small practical steps. Teaching professionals to detach from their personal biases through conditioning takes time and effort, but segregating prejudice will help you get better results and successful hiring processes. Here is how:

  1. Revamp job descriptions: It is time to remove job descriptions that may be prejudicial or lean towards certain genders or qualities that come from a specific community to make the position seem more accessible and inclusive for all. If it helps, adding your motto to promote inclusive hiring will also help reluctant candidates assuming there is bias come forward to apply.
  • Encourage blind interviews: Having a blind resume interview process may seem like a daunting process, but it will help eliminate the internal bias of the hiring professionals. If it cannot be implemented completely, we suggest that the resume be scanned by an unbiased party while choosing candidates shortlisted for interviews, which means all the entrants pass the criteria for the job and the interview conducted will be a fair process based on skill and experience.
  • Take work sample tests from candidates: Asking candidates to appear for a skill assessment test or pre-employment tests will help you decide without bias which candidate is a great fit for the organization from an objective point of view. A technical test where candidates are asked to provide samples or a part of the job that the position will entail is a great way to assess their potential.
  • Do not ask for personal information that projects bias from candidates: Asking for personal information that leans towards a candidate’s marital status, religion, gender roles, ethnicity or any such factor is a big no if internal bias is required to be eliminated. By sticking to professional details, there’s a better chance to keep the process fair.
  • Keep interviews standardized: Holding standardized interviews will ensure that the hiring process is even and only skilled candidates get thorough, irrespective of their personal information. Asking a set of standardized questions with variations based on their level of experience or skills is a good way to start.
  • Switch personal likability to common interests between the organization and candidates: Replacing personal preference of a hirer to thinking from an organizational connection point of view is essential to recruit the best candidate. This will ensure only a candidate that matches the mission, vision, and goals of the company.
  • Train hiring teams to separate bias and think from an organizational perspective when at work: To create an environment of diversity and inclusivity, the hiring teams require regular training to be kept informed and fair in their methods of hiring. Sometimes, they may not be aware of the presence of an internal bias or how it is harmful. By raising awareness, an organization can set inclusivity goals among hirers so they can recruit better.

By inculcating the steps given above, an organization can reduce and eliminate hiring bias from the process of hiring. HR is responsible for creating an inclusive environment with a balanced workforce. To learn more about HR and their best practices, visit our hirer blogs.

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