Identifying Bias In Group Interviews And Consensus Hiring

Posted by The ConveyIQ Team

So, your hiring team is deciding whether to offer a job to a candidate.

What happens when your team can’t agree on whether to hire, even after extensive debate?

This is going to happen more often than you’d like. People are different, and a healthy mix of opinions paints more realistic picture of a candidate’s potential fit at your organization.

It’s your job as hiring manager to sift through the opinions and chart a clear course of action. You also need to maintain a process that ensures your hiring decisions are fair and not clouded by bias.

This is where standardization comes into play. Your hiring team needs a proper procedure to put the factors that matter first, eliminate bias, and ensure you’re making the right hiring decisions.

Here are some things to consider:

Focus On Core Skills

An unbiased hiring process begins with standardizing your interviews. First, establish a set of guidelines that are “must-haves” for your particular job req, and craft a standard list of questions surrounding those core skills. This makes the playing field even for all candidates, and your hiring team has a clear-cut basis of comparison, whether you’re conducting group interviews or not.

Respect Your Values

Finding the right candidate goes beyond just evaluating for particular skills — they need to have a good cultural “fit” too. Make sure your company has a set list of core values and guidelines for how a candidate should fit at your company. These guidelines should go beyond particular job requirements and encompass a broader picture of a perfect candidate. Include factors like career development, aspirations, and the overall mission of your organization.

Foster Transparency

If your hiring team comes to a standstill with talent that meets all of your cultural guidelines, then there may be some bias behind why some members of your team may not be sold.

It’s important to make sure all members of your hiring team are transparent on why they feel a candidate isn’t right for the job. Are their reasons personal, or based on a “gut feeling?” Are they leaning towards another candidate for reasons outside of your guidelines? Challenge your team to evaluate their own reasons for approving or disqualifying a candidate. It can expose flaws in their personal evaluation process and lead to more responsible hires later down the line.

When All Else Fails…

A standardized hiring process is the backbone of consensus-driven hiring.

But people aren’t perfect. Deadlocks are still going to happen from time to time, no matter how tight your hiring process is. And deadlocks only mean one thing: a longer time-to-hire process that puts you at risk for losing out on top talent.

At that point, it’s important to consider all of the factors, make an executive decision, and move on. You may ruffle some feathers, but if you base your decision on the process in place, you’ll be able to justify your decision and and spark change for future hiring decisions, too.

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