Written by Guest Author | January 9, 2018
While it is widely recognised just how important workplace diversity is for organisations that wish to become or remain leading innovators in their field, for so many firms, a few nagging factors seem to hold them back from achieving that.
It’s certainly easy for your hiring team to be unconsciously biased in favour of and against certain groups of people – after all, it’s human nature and is typically acted on without any thought or malice.
Such bias can take many forms – perhaps racial, gendered, personality-based or something else altogether – but what can’t be denied is that it exists. Here are some of the forms of unconscious bias of which you should be especially aware.
You only need to have a quick look on social media these days to see how conformity bias can manifest among groups of people who very much think the same as each other.
It’s a form of bias that can arise due to the individual simply following the opinion of the majority, while ignoring their own views. In recruiting, it can happen in a panel interview, where some individuals may fear disagreeing with the majority and therefore avoid airing their own thoughts.
Are you allowing just one aspect or detail of the candidate or their CV to overshadow everything else?
This could result in you regarding an unsuitable candidate as suitable simply because they studied at an especially prestigious university, for instance, or seeing a fit candidate as unfit solely on the basis of disliking one of their former careers.
It can also be easy to become swayed by external appearance in one’s hiring decisions.
It can certainly happen if there is a deep-rooted belief that the more handsome candidate will perform better. However, the opposite can also occur in what is known as the ‘bimbo effect’, whereby someone who is traditionally attractive is similarly dismissed.
Affinity and similarity bias
These are among the most common forms of unconscious bias, with the former occurring when the hirer prefers a certain candidate because of traits that the two of them share – for example, having studied at the same university.
Similarity bias, meanwhile, arises when the recruiter sees themselves or part of themselves in the job candidate, and is therefore more open to the idea of employing them.
Even some of the biggest companies in their respective fields, and which take great pride in the diversity of their employee base, can sometimes fail to assemble a truly diverse team as a result of unconscious bias. It’s certainly a factor to bear in mind when you are looking for appropriate in-house recruitment software that can help you to ‘breed out’ such bias from your hiring process.
Why hesitate to request a demo of our sought-after Fusion recruitment platform here at Webrecruit today? We’ll help to ensure you select the in-house recruitment software that reflects the working process and full breadth of requirements of your hiring team.