In order to recruit and hire a better quality and diverse workforce, here are three easy steps to follow:
Step 1: Reach a Wider Audience with the Right Job Posting
Potential candidates will usually see your job posting before they look at anything else. This means that your job posting will significantly impact who applies for the position, so it’s important to be aware of the language that you are using. To reach a wider audience, only include requirements in the job description that are necessary for the role. Although this is a general rule for inclusive hiring practices, studies have also found that women, compared to men, are less likely to apply for jobs where they don’t meet all of its requirements.
If the role allows for it, you can also consider expanding the job boards you are posting on and publishing your job postings in different languages to reach a more diverse audience. Additionally, refrain from using overly formal language that may discourage potential candidates from applying.
In your job posting, don’t forget to state your organization’s commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI), the benefits and accommodations your firm offers employees, and the measures it takes to foster an inclusive work culture. You are also more likely to attract a diverse set of candidates if they are aware that your organization is committed to equitable hiring practices and dedicated to providing candidates with accommodations throughout the hiring process. Therefore, it can be beneficial to state the accommodations you are able to offer candidates throughout the process (such as extended interview times), as well as encourage applicants to reach out if they have specific requests.
Step 2: Reduce Bias During the Interview Stage
Most of us have biases, and the concerning part is that often, we’re unaware of them (that’s why it’s called unconscious bias). The interview stage of the hiring process can be especially susceptible to unconscious bias, so it is important to develop a few safeguards to reduce its effects on decision-making. In addition to creating a diverse hiring committee, provide the committee members with training on unconscious bias and approaches for equitable hiring practices.
When evaluating candidates, the committee should decide on the questions and evaluation criteria prior to interviews. The committee should assess how well the candidate meets each of the requirements set out, and be clear about why each applicant is or isn’t the best candidate for the job. This is essential because relying on our “gut feelings” makes us more susceptible to allowing our unconscious biases to influence our decisions. Therefore, focus on the candidates’ skills and how they compare against the job requirements, rather than a vague sense of whether they would be the “right fit”.
Step 3: Schedule Periodic Reviews
Scheduling periodic reviews of your organization’s hiring practices can help you evaluate its effectiveness. It’s important to consider whether the current process is equitable and whether changes need to be made to cater to a broader audience. For instance, is the job posting reaching diverse demographics? Are there adequate accommodations being offered throughout the process to ensure a fair process?
When possible, it can be helpful to document hiring decisions to identify if bias shaped these decisions and where you can implement changes.
As EDI is a changing landscape, annual periodic reviews will help your organization stay up-to-date with best practices. Moreover, as your organization’s goals, challenges, capacity, and processes change, its policies should be updated to reflect these changes.
Although this can be an overwhelming task, the good news is that you can seek help from a number of resources. There are countless webinars, books, and third-party tools that can provide you with guidance. It can also be beneficial to hire an equity consultant who can conduct interviews and organizational reviews, hold workshops and training sessions, and provide policy recommendations that are tailored to your organization’s unique needs and capacity.
Clausehound’s Policysaurus EDI technology, along with its teams of subject matter experts, researchers, and lawyers, provides tools to manage research for the purpose of policy review, analysis, and development. Their team will aid in the efficient, in-depth, and semi-automatic review of your organizations’ policies, procedures, and other relevant documents.