Three Practical Tips to Avoid Gender Bias When Recruiting

Gender bias continues to persist in organizations and the workplace, giving rise to inequalities at various stages […]

 of the employment cycle. So, where do we start?

Although subtle, gender bias has a complex way of influencing the recruitment process, with individuals committed to equality harboring unconscious biases that impact the recruiting and selecting decision. From creating and distributing job posting to interviewing and hiring, gender-based stereotypes affect who gets hired, how their salaries are negotiated, who receives career opportunities, and who does not.

Gender inequality extends from recruitment to selection to promotion, and recruiters can do more to help neutralize and avoid gender bias when recruiting. Here are three practical tips to consider:

  1. Advertise and Recruit Where Diverse Audiences Exist
  2. Use Technology to Improve Your Job Advertisements
  3. Examine Evaluation Criteria for Biases

Advertise and Recruit Where Diverse Audiences Exist

By searching for candidates in venues that target diverse audiences, your company can increase its efforts to reach underrepresented groups. Consider making a list of current recruiting venues including website such as www.hirediversity.com or www.diversityjobs.com, and even diversity networking forums on LinkedIn. These will help with strategic planning to create a diverse candidate pipeline which will aid in achieving your organization’s diversity goals.

Use Technology to Improve Your Job Advertisements

Language plays an instrumental role in gender bias. Although this may be unintentional, the words used in your job advertisements create a picture of who is suitable for the role. Therefore, you can choose to use technology to aid with learning and improving your advertisements rather than simply relying on your own skills, which may contain unconscious biases. Words move individuals, and you must aim to target the right audiences. Two examples of such technology include Unitive and Textio, which have augmented writing software tools that will scan your posts, ensuring that your text uses inclusive wording.

Examine Evaluation Criteria for Biases

Ensuring that the criteria used to evaluate individuals is free from bias is crucial to selecting and recruiting the best-suited individuals for your positions. A good way to start is by having the selection committee team rate candidates and providing reasons for their ratings. When posting jobs, encourage applicants to provide clear information related to the job to demonstrate their suitability for the position. The tools and procedures used must be standardized to resist bias thus, providing the recruiting team with clear knowledge of the applicants’ qualifications and experience.

Final Thoughts

Gender discrimination has the potential to begin during recruiting. Although many recruiters and hiring managers may argue that they are not biased in their decision-making, data proves otherwise. The above are a few tips to assist in avoiding gender bias when recruiting.

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