Brushing up the CV is often the first thing a job seeker will do when looking for a new job. It’s is a handy document which lists the potential candidate’s experience, qualifications, and education, but does your recruitment process find the best person for the job if you go by a CV alone? Is your perception of the person behind the CV influenced by unconscious bias?
It could be argued that a CV is just a (not always truthful) round-up of the opportunities and privileges the candidate has been afforded, rather than being a true measure of the qualities you’re recruiting for.
Hiring managers spend an average of just 7.4 seconds screening an applicant’s CV. Those seconds are spent looking at only six things: the name, current company, previous company, previous position, current position, and education.
How can you make an informed decision about who’s the best person to fill the job vacancy in just seven seconds? You can’t! Chances are you’re more likely to hire people like yourself if you’re unaware of your unconscious bias.
Essentially, unconscious bias is made up of assumptions we may have about things like religion, race, ethnicity, education and gender in the workplace. They may unintentionally influence your hiring decisions and, therefore, you may not be hiring the best candidate.
As touched upon in previous blog, unconscious bias could negatively affect your business in terms diversity and inclusion, innovation, and attrition. Most businesses now have stringent diversity and inclusion policies to monitor if any unconscious bias creeps into the recruitment strategy.
One such recruitment strategy is to screen ‘blind’ CVs, where personal information like name, age and ethnicity are removed, so that personal bias doesn’t occur.
There are other tactics you could use to find the perfect candidate without having to screen hundreds of CVs. Some of them are;
Not quite yet…
The CV now forms one part of a portfolio where candidates introduce their talents and achievements. Most people have a LinkedIn profile too, and some may have a video CV or even a personalised slide deck they like to share.
The CV is often a conversation starter for our consultants. It’s a questioning tool to find out more – often about the stuff which isn’t being said. We listen to our candidates about why they are looking, what the future looks like for them, what’s non negotiable on when it comes to the next offer. We then use that info to network on behalf of our candidate. Showing that we know our candidates builds trust with clients.
We’d love to get to a place where the CV has less an less relevance because it allows prejudice to creep in, but initially it helps get to know our candidates.
If you would like to know more about how to remove unconscious bias from your recruiting process to create a more diverse team, or if you’d like to chat about your CV, get in touch with Maxine on 01256 236997 or email email@example.com
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