Hiring Bias. You may think that the laws that have been established in the recent past would put an end to these biases. But research shows that laws alone are not enough to level the hiring field. Here’s why…
The Bystander Effect
The bystander effect is when multiple people witness an emergency, and nobody reaches out to get help because they assume that somebody else is doing so. What does this have to do with hiring bias. A similar practice to the bystander effect is happening in response to the laws that require companies to hire a certain percentage of women and people of color. Companies will not hire women or people of color because they believe that other companies need to hire them to fill their quota. If all companies are thinking this one can see how women and people of color are not being hired in accordance with laws that have been put in place.
Bias: Another Barrier for Job Seekers
At Daily Work, we work with a diverse array of people seeking employment. Many of them are new to the way things are done in the United States, including the process of being hired for a job. One of our interns said that when she lived in Somalia, people would get jobs because a family member worked for a company and referred them. In the USA, getting work is much more complex. There's already a lot to learn for those who are not native to the U.S. employment process and hiring biases make things even more challenging.
Daily Work meets our job seekers where they are in the process of navigating the employment process to make sure they understand the differences in both finding work and actually doing the job. Case managers assist job seekers in building resumes that pinpoint their strengths and help them to learn skills, such as computer skills, to enhance their employability. Despite this, substantial research shows that Black, Indigenous and People of Color are less likely to be hired than White people even among companies committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives. To learn more, read about this interesting research published in Harvard Business Review.
What Can Employers Do?
There are a few things employers can do during the hiring process to keep from engaging in unconscious hiring bias.
1.Use gender neutral words when writing the job description.
2.Advertise job openings on wider channels such as a variety of job search engines and social media channels so that a larger variety of candidates are reached.
3.When it comes to selecting people to interview, there are staggering statistics that show that white sounding names get far more interviews than individuals with non-white sounding names. To avoid this bias, remove names and other identifying factors when reading resumes.
4.Use a structured interview process.
5.Utilize a diverse hiring committee when interviewing candidates.
Please, do something, even if it's anonymous, if you notice hiring bias happening in your place of work. Often, people won’t change their ways, toxic or not, unless they are pressured to do so by others. At Daily Work we strive to level the field as much as possible for our job seekers and others.