Are you truly objective when recruiting?
Without a doubt, you do your best when recruiting. You thoroughly consider who the best candidate is, the job that needs a new employee and whether the candidate will fit the existing team. Additionally, you might consider what qualifications are held, which personality is preferred and maybe also their cognitive potential. You also check their references. However, is your recruitment process truly objective, even after all the considerations mentioned above are made?
Be aware of where bias might arise
Studies show that we display a lot more bias than we think.
First of all, what does it mean to be bias? Being bias means that you have an opinion in advance or that you demonstrate prejudice. Bias affects a recruitment process negatively since you are not objective. Bias might arise in many aspects of the process. Everyone in the process may be biased. Bias might also occur when you ask questions. It might also happen, when you are creating a job post, due to your choice of words.
Completely avoiding bias is impossible
You might not be able to avoid bias completely. However, by focusing on the pitfalls, you can minimize the risk of bias. There is a tendency that we would like to hire people that remind us of ourselves in the following areas: experience, qualifications, and personality. However, will you then have enough diversity in the team? You might need another supplement, other than another employee with the same professionalism and/or personality.
Making use of neutral words
Are you aware of your use of language when creating job posts? Studies show and prove that job ads with stereotype masculine words keep women from applying for the job.
Danielle Gaucher, Justin Friesen, and Aaron C, in 2011, discovered a correlation between the use of stereotypical masculine words and feminine words in job ads and which job ads men and women were interested in. More information can be found in the article entitled, “Evidence That Gendered Wording in Job Advertisements Exists and Sustains Gender Inequality (Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, July 2011, Vol 101(1), p109-28)”. In here the appendix with the list of feminine and masculine words can also be found.
So how do we choose candidates in an objective way?
It is hard to avoid bias when choosing candidates entirely, but if we do our best, we can minimize the risk of bias.
The solution lies in the fact of being aware of the pitfalls as well as a structured recruitment process with an objective focus.