What’s the first thing you think about when you hear the word “inclusivity” in relation to hiring? Is it disabilities or perhaps a more modern term, pronouns?
We can put lots of different labels but what it boils down to is hiring people with the skills and knowledge that the company needs without focusing on elements that have no effect on the quality of the work. In most cases, talent’s gender, race, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, and disabilities don’t have any influence on how well they will perform their work tasks.
And why are we talking about inclusive hiring?
No, it’s not about following trends. It’s common sense: if you are biased and discriminate, you are narrowing your own talent pool and potentially missing out on some amazing people who might turn your company around. There is no doubt about it, a company can only benefit from inclusive hiring.
How To Make Sure You Get the Right Candidates?
Just as simple as it is to conclude that inclusive hiring is beneficial, it is as clear that it is no easy task.
What are the steps you can take to ensure that you get just the talent you need?
1. Start With the Job Descriptions
Companies often decide to put the bar very high, even higher than the position, in reality, entails because they don’t want under-qualified people to apply. Also, they secretly hope they’ll attract a unicorn, a person that really possesses all of the things from that long list.
What they actually achieve is to push away the talents that might be the perfect fit for their actual needs and attract the very people they are “running” away from. There are always those who think in terms of “Hey, if you can write that you are looking for a 25-year-old person with 30 years of experience, I can also apply and say that I’m that person”.
Honesty is your best policy, it’s vital to list the level of knowledge and skills you need the candidate to have without making presumptions about other characteristics that the candidate may or may not need to have. It’s best for the job opening descriptions to be simple and precise. Don’t ask for the impossible or promise the earth, and most importantly: don’t stick your nose in irrelevant things.
2. Ensure Shortlisting Is Fair
Have you ever shortlisted a person just because of some random detail, such as their hometown, name, or a hobby that’s completely unrelated to the work they’ll be performing? OK, you probably did that when two candidates’ qualifications were super similar, and you had to make a strict decision, but still, we all know that’s not fair.
Shortlisting can be tricky, but it doesn’t have to be if you set clear criteria. It’s also a good idea for at least two people to decide so that there’s less chance of being biased. To avoid being led to temptation, it’s best you make sure certain details can’t be seen, such as names, locations, schools, and date of birth, as those details don’t matter.
For instance, Roango has a feature called “stealth mode” by which the candidates can hide their name, surname, preferred salary range, working hours, and location from their profiles. This can be helpful for the company’s hiring team as the temptations are removed immediately.
3. Prepare Thoroughly for the Interview
A job interview is not only about the questions: you are creating a setting for the whole event whose end goal is to get to know the talent better. This doesn’t mean you’ll ask them about their marital status or something as trivial as that. Instead, you’ll be wrapping your head around their previous experience and expertise and assessing how well they would fit into your company culture.
Also, choosing the team that will sit on the interviews is of immense importance, as well as assigning them roles, that is, what to pay special attention to. It goes without saying that you need to leave enough time, regardless of whether the interviews are online or in person because something unpredictable can always happen. For example, one of you may have problems with the internet connection, or you may talk a bit longer with one of the candidates.
Naturally, the interview’s concept won’t be the same for a software engineer and for a UX/UI designer and while some people shine in interviews as they are great talkers, others shy away from it. If this is something that’s not vital for the position itself, it’s important to find the best means for the candidates to demonstrate their capabilities.
4. Teach Your Team To Recognize Bias
One of the main problems of bias is that it’s unconscious. Most times, people are simply unaware that they are making unfounded assumptions because it’s in our nature — we rely on our past experiences for guidance and even save time and energy. But those patterns in our experiences might mislead us, and this is how we conclude that “this person’s T-shirt isn’t ironed; it must mean they are sloppy when it comes to work as well.”
All your team needs is to become aware of this, and most of them will pick up on these biased thoughts even as they start forming. Those included in the hiring process simply can’t allow their judgment to be clouded by some unrelated details because by doing so, they might be losing some really amazing opportunities.
In general, bias awareness training is a good investment for the whole company to go through, not just the hiring team. You can’t prevent your brain from starting to go in that direction, but you can stop it in its tracks once you recognize what’s going on.
5. Include Third-Party Platforms in the Process
Yes, you can list the job openings only on your website, but adding third-party job sites to the mix will maximize your visibility. Ideally, you would aim for one with a large talent pool, and for platforms to achieve this, they either have to be active for a longer time or truly excellent at catering to their talents’ needs.
A platform that protects talents’ privacy, prevents headhunters from bothering them, provides meaningful information about a company (e.g., company culture), and allows their skills to speak for themselves…all of this (and much more) is embodied in Roango. It is highly talent-oriented, making it popular among the Millennials and Gen Z.
Furthermore, its plethora of advanced tools supports a company’s hiring process from A to Z. It facilitates matchmaking, and communication, creating pipelines that are a seamless fit to your job openings, moving candidates through stages, and many more.
A Little Common Sense Can Go a Long Way
There’s no doubt about it: inclusive hiring has to be incorporated in your strategy if you want to attract top-notch talents. However, doing it properly isn’t always straightforward.
All steps mentioned in this blog are worth applying and if in doubt, don’t hesitate to rely on common sense. If you don’t wish to be judged based on your age, nationality or something as irrelevant as that, but based on your work, effort, and teamwork, you shouldn’t do that to others. By acknowledging our differences we become more tolerant but we also start noticing the untapped potential both in people and concepts and this is the driving force behind progress.