How Do You Conduct Blind Hiring?

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Posted by: David Garcia

Topics: Human Resources, Recruitment

Could your company be more inclusive? No one wants to feel like their business is not giving all their candidates a fair opportunity. Unfortunately, traditional hiring processes have a lot of room for personal bias. Blind hiring is a solution to help remove this bias from the hiring process, and many companies are taking it on.

As the times change, it is vital to explore new practices that ensure your company stays up to date. As an employer, it is your job to ensure that your hires are the best suited for the organization while still ensuring that the recruitment practice is fair for all your potential candidates.

Read on to discover what blind hiring is and how you can absorb these practices into your hiring process.

What Is Blind Hiring?

Finding the best candidate in a large pool can be tricky when recruiting for a position. 

There are many qualities that hiring managers use to determine who is the right fit. Traditional recruitment techniques draw from many details of a candidate's applications, including experience, education, skills, and references. 

Unfortunately, using these details incorrectly can create an un-diversified monoculture in the company that excludes applicants based on unfair criteria.

A study by researchers from M.I.T and the University of Chicago created identical resumes with half white-sounding names and half black-sounding names. These studies found that the applications with white-sounding names had a significantly higher call-back rate. Studies like this prove that, even unconsciously, recruitment managers can fall into bias during the recruitment process

Blind hiring means removing some of this identifying information, such as the applicant's name, gender identity, education, and socioeconomic background, during the recruitment process. Especially in the screening stage, removing some of these criteria means that your hiring managers will refocus on the candidate's skill set and not where they come from or who they are.

How to Implement Blind Hiring

Implementing blind hiring tactics is partly a matter of process and partly a matter of outlook. Changing your perspective on how to screen your employees and who deserves the job is feasible with just a few minor tweaks and some refocusing on new aspects of a candidate's criteria. Here is a brief list of things to do and things to keep in mind.

1. Look at Your Job Descriptions

Blind hiring isn’t just about removing bias from the applicant screening stage but the entire hiring process. That starts with the job description

Take a second look at your job descriptions to check for language that is not inclusive. Is it gender-neutral? Gendered language could mean more than writing ‘he/she.’ Have you chosen words that could seem traditionally masculine or feminine or that seem to encourage candidates of a specific gender? These are all things to consider when looking at your job descriptions.

2. Obscure the Right Criteria

The most critical decision when blind hiring is determining the criteria you will remove from the hiring process. You can obscure various parts of resumes, CVs, and other applications using either software or application codes. 

But what are you meant to be blocking out, and what do you keep? The data you remove is worth thinking about when you implement this tactic.

While some obvious choices are name, age, and gender, there are many other aspects that you could choose to remove from your hiring manager's decision. Do you need to know which school your applicant attended? Where they live? 

There are many things to consider, and you may be surprised at what difference it makes for your recruitment.

3. Focus on Skills and Performance in Interviews

Traditionally, behavioral questions are a large part of the interview process. But you want to shift your company's focus to hiring someone based on what they can do instead of who they are. That means the interview stage is critical.

The interview is when your hiring manager will meet each candidate face to face. It’s the stage most vulnerable to bias since you can’t remove identifying characteristics.

For this reason, it’s best to standardize the interview questions. Consider asking questions that focus on technical aspects and performance-based questions. After all, you hire your employees on what they can do and how they handle tasks, not how they look or their parent's income. 

Preparing skill-based assessments can prove your candidate's strengths in a fair, objective way.

Does Blind Hiring Work?

This new practice is making headlines in the recruitment industry, but does it achieve anything? Creating a fair and equal workspace is something that everyone can agree to, but as an employer, you may also be wondering how it affects the performance of your business. Luckily, data proves that a diverse workplace will help your company perform better

Johnson & Johnston, Verizon & Union Pacific are examples of large companies promoting and encouraging diversity and finding success within their industries. Reportedly, massive tech companies like Google also implement diversity practices such as blind hiring.

Creating a diverse workplace and updating your hiring practices can be a slow process involving transforming varying systemic issues. But techniques like blind hiring are successful because they are simple. Implementing blind hiring takes just a slight readjustment but can work to help your company find diversity and success.

Conclusion

Unfortunately, trying to thin out your candidate pool can lead to bias in the hiring process. Hiring managers spend much of their time looking for ways to reduce your applicant pool. Blind hiring practices can eliminate the potential for bias to ensure that the criteria used to sort qualified from unqualified applicants doesn’t come down to personal and subjective perspectives.

To speed up your recruitment time, ScoutLogic is here to help! Our scouts assist employers with bulk background checks, carefully ensuring that your employee vetting is fair and bias-free.

Want to know more? Find out with a free assessment today!

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