9 tips for interviewing for diversity and inclusion


How can you make your recruitment more inclusive? Diversity Council of Australia has partnered with Jobsbank to develop evidence-based guidelines to help Australian businesses attract, recruit and select a diversity of jobseekers by recruiting inclusively. 


DCA’s Inclusive Recruitment at Work research found there is significant a lack of inclusive recruitment knowledge and practice in Australian organisations. It found this, along with biases that negatively affect our hiring decisions, prevents us from tapping into the talent available in the Australian labour market.

In response, DCA has created a series of tools to assist organisations in building their inclusive recruitment capabilities and practices. This includes tips on inclusive interviewing. 

The DCA resource outlines 9 tips to help you change your mindset and behaviours to minimise bias, and instead interview for diversity and inclusion. They are:

1 Accept we all have biases

We all have biases that can negatively affect our hiring decisions. Accepting this is the first step to addressing them. No-one is pre-loaded with inclusive behaviour – we are, in fact, hardwired to align with people like us and reject those we consider different.

2 Aspire to an open mindset

Research shows that asking people to consider the value of being open-minded and questioning prejudices leads to less bias. The opposite occurs when telling people to “stop” being prejudiced and racist.

3  Know your bias hot spots

We are more likely to make biased hiring decisions when we are busy, short on information or overloaded by it, or with people like ourselves. 

4 Slow down and systemise your thinking

Bias typically occurs due to automatic thinking. Try the tips listed in the rows below to kickstart your brain into slow-thinking mode. This will minimise the risk of hiring decisions being influenced by any fast-thinking biases.

5 Assess with structure

Use structured interviews, selection criteria and scorecards to evaluate candidates and standardise assessment. Also use horizontal assessments (comparing all candidates’ answers on question one, then all their answers on question two, and so on).

6 Reach out for alternative perspectives

Avoid making the final hiring decision on your own. Test your assessments and thinking with other managers and peers. It helps to make sure you consider all information and potential for bias.

7 Check yourself on likeability

We all tend to gravitate towards people with whom we ‘click.’ But hiring for likeability leads us to hire people who are just like ourself.

8 Take time

Avoid decisions when you are tired and rushed, as this can result in similarity attraction bias being amplified.

9 Revisit and ‘flip-it’

Ask yourself: “Would I come to the same conclusion if this candidate came from a different demographic profile (e.g. gender, racial group or sexual orientation)?

Download the DCA Toolkit

The DCA Inclusive Recruitment Toolkit offers these tip, plus more advice and guidelines to support organisations in building inclusive recruitment capabilities and practices. Download the toolkit HERE


More information: www.dca.org.au

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