Is the Future of Hiring Blind?
If you’ve watched the reality singing show The Voice, you already know what blind auditions are. In the show, the judges face the audience throughout each singer’s audition instead of watching the stage. Judges are allowed to turn around and see the contestant only if they vote for the singer to be on their team.
Inspired by the show, hiring technology company GapJumpers developed a similar process for screening candidates. GapJumpers hides everything from a candidate’s name, gender, and educational affiliations to their background and experience. That way, companies can make objective assessments based on nothing but the individual’s existing skill set.
The Typical Blind Hiring Process
In most companies, when a candidate applies, their application is vetted by a recruiter or the hiring team. When you use blind hiring, it’s different. You identify the requirements of a job and develop unique challenges to screen for the necessary skill set. When a candidate applies, they are asked to complete the challenges. Based on the results, candidates who have proven themselves sufficiently skilled can be revealed to the hiring manager.
Before you implement blind hiring, there are two things to consider.
1. Do You Need Blind Hiring?
The answer is almost always “yes,” but let’s humor the skeptics. Analyze your historical hiring data to figure out what your typical applicant looks like. Companies often attribute their hiring challenges to leakage in the candidate pipeline or lack of diversity in the candidate market. However, GapJumpers discovered many candidates drop off during the screening process for any number of reasons, many of which have to do with the use of resumes in the hiring process.
Blind hiring helps level the playing field and enables applicants to put the focus on their skills rather than well-written descriptions of their experience or education.
2. Show, Don’t Tell
Pilot blind hiring processes for a couple of roles to see the kind of magic a blind audition can work. But what if the issue really is that the business is not attracting a big enough candidate pool or the right kinds of candidates?
Like Flies to Honey
Maybe you’re looking for candidates, like love, in all the wrong places. Progressive companies source candidates through job boards and partnerships with educational institutions and coding bootcamps. Such unconventional places are great ways to find ambitious, talented candidates who have the skills for the job but may not have appealing experience or educational backgrounds.
Finding the Right People
If you’re attracting everyone but the right type of candidate, perhaps the issue lies with your job description or the interviewers themselves. The first problem can be solved with objectivity, a good content writer, and some good advice on drafting great job descriptions. You can also use an augmented writing tool to help you identify any unconscious negative impressions you are making with your language.
As for the interviewers, the issue might be that they let their biases play into their perceptions. You need to ask yourself: Does the hiring panel reflect the kind of diversity you’d like to see on your team? Is there real representation, or is it just one decision-maker calling all the shots? Are your interviews consistent? Are you asking the same questions to every candidate in the same manner? Are those questions asked by the same people?
Somewhere in the future, we will all be objective. We will switch off our emotions and approach every hire through a purely rational lens. Until then, however, blind hiring is the way to go.
Freshteam by Freshworks is smart HR software that enables recruiters to remotely attract, hire, and onboard great talent, whether you choose to go the blind audition route or not. Freshteam helps hiring teams collaborate and make the best hiring decisions together, even when people are working out of their homes. If you are interested, you can check it out for free right here.
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