Unconscious bias during the hiring process makes diversity and inclusion goals far harder to hit. However, it’s also surprisingly difficult to keep at bay, primarily because those influenced by it aren’t always aware that bias is entering the equation.
Fortunately, that doesn’t mean there’s nothing companies and managers can do to eliminate bias from their hiring process. If you want to keep unconscious bias at bay, here are some tips that can help.
Standardize Interview Questions and Scoring
Standardization can ensure that all candidates are treated the same way during the hiring process. Often, it’s wise to start by creating a set interview questions list. By doing so, every applicant meeting with a hiring manager faces off against the same questions, so no one incidentally ends up advantaged or disadvantaged based on what they’re asked.
Similarly, developing a formal rubric for scoring can eliminate unconscious bias. It creates an outline for evaluating candidate performances. Plus, you end up with a written record, ensuring top performers aren’t accidentally forgotten or overlooked.
Create a Diverse Hiring Team
Having a diverse hiring team ensures that unconscious bias on one person’s part doesn’t become the basis for decisions. Instead, a group of individuals with varying perspectives will work together to make critical choices, an approach that typically makes finding the best candidate easier.
Ideally, the diverse hiring team will be a part of the equation during the entire process. That allows them to assist with the development of the job ad, resume screening, interviews, and hiring decisions, ensuring that unconscious bias is less likely to become a factor at any point along the way.
Use Technology Wisely
Many people assumed that certain technologies – like AI – would create simple avenues for avoiding bias in the hiring process. However, they can also perpetuate biases depending on how they’re set up or the data they’re given as source material.
Before you allow technology to take over a candidate screening step, consider how the instructions given to it may support or counteract biases. By doing so, you can avoid a potentially costly misstep based on the assumption that the tech would inherently eliminate discrimination.
Embrace Knowledge and Training
Being aware of unconscious bias can make a difference. By having every member of the hiring team and all company leaders participate in unconscious bias training, they can learn to spot their own potential missteps. In turn, this leads to self-improvement over time, reducing bias throughout the organization.
Ideally, everyone participating should also check their level of unconscious bias as part of the broader training. There are several online applications that can serve as a starting point, effectively shining a light on issues that are going unnoticed. Then, you can provide all participants with the tools they need to improve, using a judgment-free approach to inspire change while reducing fear or resentment.
Ultimately, eliminating unconscious bias in your hiring process is crucial if you want to improve diversity, create an inclusive culture, and genuinely find the best candidate for the job. If you’d like to learn more about how you can combat bias, TempStaff can help. Contact us today.