recruiting the Best. Podcast by Safaraz Ali –
If anyone accused Safaraz of being obsessive about recruitment he would probably please ‘guilty as charged.’
He knows from personal experience how important it is to recruit the right people and how costly getting it wrong can be.
Safaraz is hugely committed to diversity and in this episode, he responds to some radical ideas about how bias, intended or unintended, can be eliminated from the recruitment process.
How about making sure that every candidate has a number and not a name, that gender is never revealed, and neither are the names of schools or colleges attended? Names provide information about gender and ethnicity and educational institutions can promote bias. For example, someone who has been to a ‘Russel group’ university probably has an advantage over a candidate that has not.
Then at interview how about if the interview is in camera with the candidate unseen and instead of speaking with their own voice, their words are spoken electronically? After all, to see a candidate and hear them speak provides information about gender, age, and social status.
The ideas are radical but what does Saf think about them?
To what extent can a recruitment process completely eliminate any chance for bias and is this even desirable?
After all it is important that the chemistry is right and that there is empathy between employer and employee. It is also important that the new team member will fit in.
These are big questions as is how artificial intelligence can be utilised to make the recruitment process fairer and more effective. Then there is the question of if artificial intelligence can replace people.
Saf is on record as saying that almost every problem is a people problem, so what about, as far as possible doing away with people?
This is an episode that opens a whole new window on recruitment.