Strategies to Reduce Gender Bias in Hiring Practices

Gender bias is still very much present in today’s hiring practices, and organizations to this day are missing out on opportunities to hire, develop, and retain top talent due to a number of faulty gender stereotypes. Decision makers tend to favor men over equally or even more qualified women when it comes to hiring, promotion, and compensation. This can obstruct diversity and hinder your efforts in creating a solid working culture. However, there are ways that you can follow to help you identify and reduce these biases. So how can you reduce gender prejudice in your hiring practices? The following strategies might come in handy.

Set a Clear Criteria for Employee Selection

Evaluate your current employee selection criteria. Does it predict success on the job? Is your company systematically filtering out women? Does your workplace promote work-life balance? Make sure that you establish a clear and genderless criteria and qualifications for employee selection and promotion decisions. The more detailed the criteria is, the more you will be able to know whether an employee meets all of the essential criteria – regardless of gender.

Avoid Maternal Bias

On average, women require shorter work hours – at least temporarily – after they become mothers, that’s why employers sometimes hesitate to hire, retain or even promote pregnant workers with family responsibilities. Some employers actually look for reasons to discharge pregnant employees to avoid paying the costs of finding a replacement during the maternity leave. But what many employers don’t understand is that by choosing to hire and empower a mom, you’ll get a loyal asset who has a sense of responsibility and dedication to her job that extends beyond her scheduled hours. In fact, working moms are capable of managing their own responsibilities more effectively and in less time than average full-timers.

Gender Neutral Job Descriptions

Your job description may drive away qualified female applicants if you include interpersonal skills and qualifications that might sound gender-biased such as “aggressive” or “able to work for long working hours”. Try to be fair, accurate, and straight to the point when it comes to writing your company’s job descriptions. List what the job really needs and select neutral words that are acceptable to both genders.

Automate Your Recruitment Process

In addition to time-saving and cost reduction, automating your recruitment process can definitely help eliminate the bias that may arise when hiring candidates the traditional way. By using an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) like Cavall, you can add business intelligence, accessibility, and transparency to your HR selection process. An ATS can give you access to detailed reports where information related to successful applicants and job vacancies will all be available to you with a simple click, therefore, you can drastically reduce the scope for human bias.

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Mohannad Al Qudah