Nextaff Client Blog

Break Apart Your Hiring Process to Identify & Eliminate Hidden Bias

Posted November 05, 2020

By its very nature, unconscious bias is something we don’t realize we’re doing. Regardless of the state of the hiring process, your unconscious bias can rear its ugly head if you don’t take steps to bypass it. The first step is to be aware that we all have hidden biases and only then can you correct them. If you want to make hiring decisions that will improve the overall hiring process for your company and candidates, here are a few ways you can eliminate your own hiring biases.

Use Diverse Sources for Candidates

When we draw from the same well, we get the same results. But if you diversify your recruiting sources, you can increase the diversity of your applicants. What sources are you using now? Common options include online job boards, word of mouth, referrals, or social media. Consider other tools you can add to your toolbox that can increase diversity for candidates.

Structure Your Interview Process

One major cause of unconscious bias is the interview itself. An unstructured interview gives you more chances to make in-the-moment decisions that may not be related to a candidate’s qualifications. Instead, create a structured interview process so each candidate has the same experience and you are judging based on the same criteria. You can formalize this with a checklist to help you stay on track.

Consider Culture Add, Not Culture Fit

A big buzzword in hiring over the last decade has been “culture fit.” Employers are looking for candidates who will fit into the current office environment and team. But sometimes this leads to hiring people with the same background. Instead of focusing on fit, think of the ways a new employee can be a “culture add.” What do they bring to the table that no one else does? This will help increase diversity mindsets and give people new ideas.

Set Goals for Diversity

Goal setting is a great way to give yourself a pathway to succeed. Diversity goals can help you increase the chances of hiring people with a variety of backgrounds. Consider the makeup of each department? How can you improve the overall diversity of each area? What kinds of mindsets, skills, attitudes, or backgrounds are you missing that can help drive your company’s success?

Utilize Skill Sets or Analyze Samples

Gut feelings often lead to poor hiring decisions, And poor hiring decisions can be very costly in terms of time and money. Instead, allow candidates to participate in skills testing or ask them to submit samples of their work so you can assess their performance. This can give you a chance to hire someone based on their skills, aptitude, and abilities rather than allowing unconscious bias to influence your final decisions.

Are you looking for a hiring partner to help you improve your processes? Contact Nextaff today.

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Categories: Hiring Advice, Management Efficiency, Hiring Strategy, Management Plan, Eliminating Hiring Bias