What is unconscious bias? It is how our brains strive to find similarities in the people we speak with, which then informs our decisions. We know that a lack of diversity is a significant problem for companies, but few people take the time to understand their role in that experience. Unconscious bias affects more than just the things we see. Hiring managers will often make decisions based on the idea that “they remind me of myself at that age.” So how can you eliminate unconscious bias if you don’t realize it’s happening? Here are some things to consider.
Use Diverse Sourcing Channels
If you’re sourcing candidates through the same channels over and over again, you’re going to keep finding the same people. If you diversify where you source potential employees, you’ll increase diversity among candidates. Look at how you hired your current staff. Do you use online job boards? Referrals? Word of Mouth? Social Media? Add in new options to find more people.
Structure Your Interviews
Unstructured interviews are often the culprit when it comes to unconscious bias. Hiring managers sometimes have a gut feeling about an employee, but those feelings are informed by certain biases you hold. To avoid this, develop an interview structure so the same criteria are used to evaluate every candidate. Create a checklist to remember details from each interview.
Think Culture Add
The focus for a long time has been on “culture fit.” Employers want to know their new hires will fit in with their current team. But this can lead to hiring people of the same background. Instead, consider the “culture add.” What can a new employee bring to the team that you don’t already have? Different mindsets mean more creativity and innovation in your workplace.
Setting diversity, inclusion, and equity goals is also a good idea for your hiring process. When you keep in mind that you should be hiring a diverse group of people, you are more likely to make placements of qualified individuals throughout your company. Consider each department and how you can improve the overall diversity in those areas. And make sure you’re looking at decision-making positions as well. If your management team shares a single cultural background, you won’t enhance diversity.
Do you want to improve your hiring process?
Work with the staffing professionals at The Vision Companies today. Visit our website and connect with us to see how we can enhance your hiring process and work environment!