7 Ways to Create a More Equitable Hiring Processes

Seeing similar types of candidates applying for the same position or for the company overall can mean that the hiring processes are not reaching a diverse enough talent pool. If you are looking to expand your company culture and include a wide array of skill sets, then it is time to revamp the way you approach recruiting. There are many ways to open the door to a more equitable hiring process, but here are a few to start.

1. Craft inclusive job descriptions that welcome all candidates 

A simple way to start making your hiring process more equitable is to start by assessing all job descriptions. Gendered language can be one reason you are receiving the same type of candidates. Do the pronouns in the description insinuate the candidate to be male, female, or non-specific? Are there specific adjectives or descriptions that lend themselves to one gender over another? Also, consider including a statement about your company’s commitment to diversity, inclusion, and equality.

2. Diversify outreach with new talent pools

Another simple way of diversifying your new hires is looking for new places to recruit from. You can only be as diverse as your recruiting efforts. It will take time to establish relationships outside of your network and recommendations, but your efforts will show in the long run. Reach out to different colleges and universities or various groups on job sites to start building those new connections.

3. Unconscious bias training

Training is a great way to expand your viewpoint and address underlying biases that exist within the hiring process. We may not always be aware of what’s stopping others from applying to a position or company. Getting in the habit of becoming aware of biases can lead to greater opportunities for others. It can also lead to larger conversations on diversity, inclusion, and equality within the workplace as well. 

4. Counter “just like me” bias 

“Just like me” bias is when we overvalue certain aspects of a candidate because they reflect aspects of ourselves. For example, if you’re an introvert you might be more drawn to hiring an introvert over an extrovert. Designing a more equitable hiring process means that every type of person, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, ability, personality, etc., should be valued equally no matter how similar they are to the person hiring them. There are psychological tests available to determine prejudices and biases.

5. Accessibility to all types of candidates

A position should be available to people with disabilities both visible and invisible. Just because a candidate has a disability should not devalue their qualifications. Plus, your hiring process should not be hindering their ability to apply. Interviews, skill tests, and other steps can be accommodated for any type of disability.

6. Standardize the process for all candidates 

Prioritizing candidates based on who they know/ are related to or having one special skill can devalue other candidates that bring complementary skills to the workplace. Standardizing the process for all candidates ensures the process is equitable and organized. 

7. Use interviews that focus on skills and life experiences

Not everyone follows the same path in life and so judging if someone is qualified for a position takes more than what’s shown on a resume. Ask for examples from their past work experience to understand all the skills they bring to the table. Some situations to ask about could be times they overcame challenges when working with a team, excelled under pressure, or took initiative.  

Questions to Ask to Change to Equitable Hiring:

  • Who are we not targeting with this job? Why? 
  • Are we valuing technical over soft skills and vice versa?
  • Are we open to hiring a candidate who offers a different skill set from those already on the team?
  • Is our hiring process open to a candidate who can shape our workplace culture not just fit in?
  • What did our applicants find difficult about our hiring process?

Diversity, equality, and inclusion in the workplace will always be evolving and reevaluated to ensure that everyone is included. Partner with IAW to help create more equity in your hiring process. Our partnerships and ERG solutions will help you stand out as an employer of choice for women. Learn more here: https://www.iawomen.com/partners

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