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Easy Ways to Make Your Recruiting Process More Inclusive

Recruitment is the biggest driver of diversity in the workplace. For a recruitment plan to reach the most varied pool of potential applicants, you should consider every aspect of the process. Here are some key things to consider at all stages of your recruiting process.  

Been a while since your last hire? Want to revamp your process to make it more inclusive? 

Recruitment is the biggest driver of diversity in the workplace. For a recruitment plan to reach the most varied pool of potential applicants, it should consider every aspect of the process: from how and where your vacancies are advertised to how accessible the application and interview process is to interested parties.  

JustinBradley is constantly thinking about best practices when it comes to recruiting, and we have some ideas to share! Here are some key things to consider at all stages of your recruiting process.  

The Job Description 

A candidate’s first glimpse into your company is the job description. By keeping the candidate’s perspective in mind and focusing on the best ways to get the most interest, you will increase the number of applicants. There are many ways for a job description to be inclusive and reach a wider audience, including: 

  • Avoid “corporate speak” that might keep a more entry-level, but qualified candidate from applying. An example of this is, “KPIs” or acronyms that only someone in the industry would know.  
  • Keep your responsibilities list to 5-7 bullet points and focus on only the key position duties.  
  • As you list qualifications, keep only those required skills and experiences such as education, years of experience, software knowledge or certifications.  
  • If you want to include “nice to haves,” make sure they are listed as “preferable.”  
  • Avoid gender-coded words like “rockstar” or “guru.” 
  • If possible, you can demonstrate company values by including benefits like parental leave, childcare subsidies, paid family sick support, pet insurance, etc. 

Selecting Candidates to Interview  

So, now you have some applications. How do you decide who to bring in to interview? Here is where being prepared and thinking through the position prior to posting really matters.  Also, keep an open mind! 

  • If you have a non-negotiable like education, software experience, or a particular skillset that you made explicit in your job description, you can eliminate those without. If you aren’t sure from just reviewing the resume, keep them in the mix! 
  • Remember that resumes do not tell the whole story. Take the time to review resumes and see if candidates could have something to offer, even if you aren’t sure they are a perfect fit from first glance. Candidates who don’t have the exact background you are looking for can sometimes make the best hires due to their intangible skillsets and work ethic.  
  • Don’t be blinded by things like a candidate going to the same university as you, or working at a particular company you like. Make sure you are screening for the requirements of the position and what experience candidates have presented.  

The Interview Process 

You have candidates scheduled.  Now what? Plan out who is going to be on the interview committee, what questions you are going to ask, and what competencies you are targeting. Make sure everyone who is participating in interviews knows what their role is in the process, what questions you would like them to focus on, and agree on what you are looking for in a candidate.  

  • Keep it Uniform- Keeping the process of how many rounds, who candidates will meet, and what questions are asked the same eliminates some of the bias that can creep in during interviews.  
  • Focus on Competencies and Requirements- Consider giving the interview committee a one-pager of questions, or a list of competencies you are targeting. This allows them to focus on the position itself, not only if they “gravitate towards” or “like” the candidate. It helps eliminate unconscious bias! 
  • Keep it Separate- Ask those interviewing to submit scorecards on candidates before speaking to others. This gives you real impressions that are not affected by anyone else’s opinion.  

Making the Offer 

Time to decide! Your interview committee has completed interviews and submitted their scorecards. You have asked the candidates all the same questions. You have focused on competencies and requirements. Who emerged as the person with the best combination of skills, experience, requirements, and competencies? 

An inclusive recruiting process is important. It takes time, consideration, and clear processes to make sure you are reaching a wide audience and finding the best fit for your role. Improving the diversity of your team won’t happen overnight. But, uncovering and remedying unconscious bias in your hiring process is a great place to start. 


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