Anonymous, or double-blind hiring is a way to ensure a fairer hiring process that delivers better results.
What does it mean?
Choosing who to hire is an important decision for any company, big or small. It would therefore make sense that unbiased hiring processes should be made a priority in order to get the best possible person for the role. For this reason, unconscious bias in recruitment needs to be eliminated, from the earliest stage possible.
So, what is anonymous hiring?
Hiring anonymously is about the removal or hiding of any information that could lead to bias at any stage of the recruitment process. This can include aspects in a job application such as gender, ethnicity, race, academic pedigree, appearance, and more. It has been repeatedly proven that hiring anonymously is the most effective way at removing bias from the hiring process!
For example, in US orchestras, the implementation of blind hiring (in this example, auditions) led to 50% more women passing the initial audition stage. This proved the bias in the process was there. Even if the interviewers had not been implementing these barriers to entry for women on purpose and bias was unconscious, the results proved that something needed to change.
Research has shown that discriminatory practice is just as strong for businesses that claim to value diversity as those that don’t, and minorities who remove reference to their race from job applications are more than 2x as likely to receive a callback for interview. For the recruitment process to be fair and representative of society, and the people in it, anonymous job applications are the way forward to create a level playing field.
Why should your company be hiring anonymously?
Blind hiring is the best way to get the optimal workforce possible. If a hiring process leads to great candidates missing out due to discrimination for unrelated reasons that don’t affect their work performance, it’s a problem. Missing out on the best talent because of bias harms both the job seekers, and the organisation. Removal of unconscious bias from the hiring process should be a clear goal for companies, and recruiters.
By focusing on real skills that the applicants have, better decisions can be made. For this reason, hiring anonymously and with insight into the skills of applicants and their fit with the job, is the best way to go. Hiring decisions that come from bias benefit no-one! Hiring anonymously eliminates preconceived bias about what a “good candidate” for the job looks like, where they were educated, or any other factor (e.g. race, gender, age, or even past companies worked for) that could lead to unfair decision making. This leads to a fairer process, and one that takes real skills & job fit into account over anything else.
How can I remove unconscious bias in hiring at my company?
There are a few ways to do this, however the later in the recruitment process, the harder it is to ensure unconscious bias is not present.
We would recommend starting the process as early as possible, and effective having systems in place throughout the hiring process to maintain fairness.
From the early stages of the recruitment process, it’s possible to remove bias by using anonymous hiring software like SymbaSync. This way, when candidates are seen as a great match for a role, it’s based purely on their unique talents and past experience.
Later on in the recruitment process, it’s important to maintain the same level of fairness towards candidates. There are many different companies currently making efforts to ensure the elimination of bias from the entire hiring process, from job description wording, to interview techniques, to companies like Paradigm who provide guidance to entire companies on how to promote diversity and inclusion.
It’s worth investing time and effort into fair hiring processes, as everyone deserves a fair shot at having success at any company they apply to work at.