How to Ensure a Fair Recruitment and Selection Process
It is a legal requirement to avoid discrimination in the recruitment and selection process – and no organisation ever intends to pre-judge candidates based on gender, race or age. In fact, there are now examples of companies fairly recruiting candidates based on skills by removing any potential discrimination when it comes to name, University education or hometown. In this blog, Toby Conibear, European Business Development Director, Bond International Software offers his top tips on how recruiters can ensure they are avoiding inadvertently discriminating against potential employees.
What’s in a name?
In 2015 David Cameron announced that some of the top UK organisations had agreed to roll out a ‘name-blind’ recruitment strategy which would remove the names of entry-level job seekers from their application forms.
This policy is in response to the huge amount of research into what a name says about a person. For example, according to research undertaken by Shippensburg University, if you have an unusual sounding name you may be associated with juvenile delinquency! Another piece of research from The New York University found that if your name is easy to pronounce people will favour you more.
The removal of names and educational details from CVs will open up a level playing field when it comes to how applicants are rated in the hiring process. This will be particularly interesting when it comes to STEM jobs (Science, Technology, Engineering and Manufacturing). According to a study out of Stanford University, when scientists were asked to evaluate identical resumes with different applicant names, students named Jennifer were rated as less competent than those named John.
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Mind your language
When writing a job advertisement care should be taken to avoid using discriminatory language. Adverts that request candidates who are ‘fit’ or ‘youthful’ could inadvertently discriminate against those with disabilities or the older workforce. CVs that are received should be cross referenced against the initial information set out in the job specification to determine whether each individual is a good fit for the specified role.
Good people are still hard to find – and those organisations that proactively introduce policies to ensure all potential candidates are reviewed and assessed equally may well be surprised by the quality of people available and the value of a more diverse workforce.