We don’t live in a fair society. The opportunity to work hard and develop a real career is not equally available to all. We were founded over 20 years ago and we are only recently prioritising how to be a more inclusive employer, so you could argue that we were part of the problem. We never went out of our way to treat people differently, but we never went out of our way to understand how to ensure our recruitment and selection processes were as fair and free from bias as possible. We never asked ourselves difficult questions about why our workforce was not more diverse.
We don’t have all the answers, but we are doing our best to listen harder and educate ourselves.
We're still in the process of working through all the actions we'll need to take, but below are some of the actions we've already put in place as part of our diversity and inclusion programme and we have more planned for 2023.
We all have a responsibility to ensure that hireful is a welcoming and inclusive work environment. So we have asked all our staff to complete our Unconscious Bias eLearning course.
There is far greater awareness of what neurodiversity is and how neurodivergent people contribute to the diversity of a workplace. We make sure all employees are trained to better understand neurodiversity, how to support neurodivergent people in the workplace, and how hireful will benefit from being neuro-inclusive. Our training also helps empower neurodivergent individuals to feel more comfortable disclosing and speaking up, so they can thrive in their work with hireful.
This is an important step to help reduce the impact of bias and ensure we’re hiring candidates with the most relevant skills for the position. Each hiring manager will design an assessment phase for each interview process that will evaluate general skills (e.g. spelling, grammar etc) and/or context specific skills. So, for instance, our marketing apprentice applicants were asked to produce an example social media post.
By moving to a competency based interview process our hiring managers will be able to focus more closely on whether the candidate is able to reference past experiences to demonstrate their capacity to perform when in the role they are interviewing for. This technique helps remove bias from the interview process.
In June 2021, we launched our new candidate survey tool. This has allowed us to anonymously survey all interviewees to understand their experience. We'll also combine this data with D&I statistics that we'll review to ensure that we are delivering a positive interview experience for all candidates we engage with at the interview stage.
Whilst an e-learning course can't alone solve the damage done by unconscious bias, raising awareness on how to mitigate the negative effects that it can have on your decision making is a good place to start. This is why we designed an Unconscious Bias course for hiring managers and one for all staff and decided to offer it for free to all organisations, for all staff, forever.
We've worked with one of our partners, Baljit Kaur, to develop a survey to measure how your staff feel about diversity and inclusion within your organisation. Gathering this feedback is an important step in understanding both where you are and the effects that any changes you have made are having. Click here for more information on our D&I survey tool.
We regularly run webinars to help recruiters and HR professionals understand how to recruit more inclusively.
All of the above represents just the start of this journey for us. We'll be challenging ourselves to do more in this area, so feel free to ask us about this at interview and give us your views as well.