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Let’s eliminate unconscious bias

Posted on 4/04/2017 by Shamal Kumal

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For a long time, culture fit was all the rage and employers looked for employees that would fit the culture of the business, the similarities, or common factors that individual would have with the rest of the team.  Recruiting in this way, however, does not make for a diverse workforce. If you are looking for individuals that think like you, work like you, live like you and look like you, are you inevitably building a workforce that is fraught with unconscious bias?

Here at Handle, we understand the importance of cultural fit and think it does have a place in the hiring process, however, we are building a stronger diversity programme that will integrate with our hiring process. We've recently moved offices and with a larger team and marvellous new facilities, we shall be able to continue to provide both our clients and candidates with the exceptional service they have come to expect.  It’s important that we can represent our clients’ brands appropriately and that our candidates have a great experience from the minute they connect with us.  We believe that it is important to look at how diverse candidates can add to a company culture and not simply just fit into it. 

It's human nature to have a bias, in the past 10 years alone over 1,000 studies have conclusively shown this, and that it impacts almost every variation of human identity: Race, religion, sexual orientation, hand dominance, gender, accent, body size, height, etc.  The important thing is to be aware of where these biases exist, recognise them and learn how to manage them.  Inspect your hiring process, throw questions out there that will constantly make you check yourself,

  • “Does this CV remind you in any way of yourself?”
  • “Is there anything about the CV that particularly impacts you? Are they really relevant to the job?
  • “Does it remind you of somebody you know? Is that positive or negative?”
  • “What pre-judgements have you made about the person? Are they based on solid information or simply your interpretations?”

By managing bias, only then can we start to build more diverse, stronger, inclusive companies that will, in turn, drive better business results and take a step towards equality.

If you'd like to be part of the growing Handle Recruitment team, find out more about a Handle career here