In an increasingly globalized marketplace, ramping up diversity efforts through immigration labor advertising is one of the best ways for companies to get a leading edge on the competition.
That said, biases are by nature difficult to detect. People generally aren’t aware of their biases, and this is why implicit hiring bias can serve as a major roadblock when it comes to building the type of future-forward, diverse team that is ready to take on tomorrow’s challenges. Indeed, recent studies have found that ethnically diverse companies outperform non-diverse companies by a whopping average of 35%. If that isn’t a good reason to start focusing on immigration advertising today, then nothing is.
It goes without saying that putting effective, objective controls in place to prevent hiring bias will also go a long way to improving a company’s bottom line. Not only will employers be able to steer clear of embarrassing and costly lawsuits, but they will also significantly reduce their failure rate by keeping criteria in place that will help them ensure they are always hiring the best person for the job.
Keeping that in mind, this article is going to list some helpful protocol that anybody engaging in an immigration labor campaign or just wanting to increase the diversity in their workplace will want to seriously consider implementing in order to ensure that their implicit biases aren’t standing in the way.
1. Raise Awareness
The first step to addressing a problem is acknowledging that it exists. It may feel awkward or difficult to talk about these types of inherent biases, but it is important that all members of the team are aware that this is a common problem that really does exist.
When hiring, a lot of people tend to make decisions based on their gut instinct or intuition. While there are times when instinctual responses can be on point, there are also other times when they are completely socially programmed, and these are the moments where hiring bias will often come into play.
When people are aware and informed about hiring bias, they are much more likely to take the time to reflect on their initial instinctual responses before making a call.
2. Watch for Biased Language
Hiring campaigns often use biased language, but it is rarely the intention of the recruiter to do so. Rather, people just tend to fall into established ways of speaking, not realizing that the wording may be alienating to large swaths of potential candidates.
For example, terms like ‘energetic’ can imply that only younger candidates are welcome, while in reality, the position might be best served by somebody with many years of experience under their belt. Meanwhile, using gendered words like ‘salesman’ could have the unwanted effect of making up to 50% of eligible candidates feel unwelcome. It is also important to focus the language more on individual skills, and less on the company as a whole. In-group oriented language will often feel off-putting to those from a more diverse background.
3. Institute a Blind Resume Review Protocol
The resume review process is one of the times when recruiters are most likely to fall into the traps set by their own subconscious biases. Without having a physical person sitting in front of them, it is all too easy to implicitly judge people by their name, age, gender or even country of origin.
Indeed, research has shown that when minorities make their resume appear more ‘white,’ they are also more likely to get hired. This means that these types of resume scanning biases are a lot more prevalent and commonplace than companies may realize.
Instituting a process that will ensure the candidates name, age and gender all blocked out at the resume stage or review will eliminate the potential to accidentally favor candidates that fit a demographic profile more similar to that of the reviewer, and force them to focus on the actual skills that they can bring to the table instead.
4. Eliminate Any Non-Validated Assessment Tools
If using any pre-employment tests, it is a must to use only those tests that have been properly screened and validated to remove any gender or cultural biases. If it is safe to assume that if the test isn’t advertised as validated, it probably isn’t, so get rid of it, stat. Focus on those scientifically tested tools that can prove that they have been validated instead.
This will not only improve the objectivity of the hiring process as a whole, but it will send the message to potential candidates that this is a company that takes diversity efforts seriously. Using validated assessment is so effective that studies have linked these types of early stage recruitment choices to better profitability of companies as a whole.
5. Use a Standardized Interview Process
The interview stage is yet another stage of the hiring process where bias will often easily take hold.
This is why it is important for companies to standardize their interview process by creating a set question protocol that is to be followed. Giving candidates a fair chance to answer the same set of questions as everybody else will ensure that an interviewer has a lot less room to act on their own personal instincts and hunches.
6. Cast a Broad Net
Advertising only in certain locations or on certain types of online forums will more often than not lead to an interview pool that favors certain demographics over others.
Launching a comprehensive immigration advertising campaign is one of the best ways to make sure that the campaign falls on a diverse range of ears rather than just particular subsets of society.
Some Things to Keep In Mind
All these practices will help create a more objective hiring protocol that will ensure that any immigration labor advertising campaign really hit the mark. However, on a subjective level, it is important that employers are continually questioning their own judgment and assumptions as well.
Keep in mind that when it comes to hiring foreign nationals, employers will want to be prepared to post PERM recruitment ads should they be required for DOC application requirements. This is a tricky process that is costly to mess up, and is best left in the hands of a professional agency specializing in immigration advertising, so don’t hesitate to seek one out today.