Talking data and gender in recruitment with Workology

Author: Jérémy Bourhis

27th April 2021

Jessica Miller-Merrell is founder of Workology and a workplace change agent focused on human resources and talent acquisition.

In light of our recent research into candidate expectations, we wanted to talk with her about our findings and more.

Read on for the full conversation below.

What was your immediate reaction to the results?

The fact that they’re losing out this high percentage of people because of scheduling is a huge concern. I’m seeing a lot of recruiters complaining about not getting the quality applications they need. So when you get these applications in your funnel, you want to keep them, especially if they’re qualified. Scheduling is part two of that.

As teams have gotten smaller, there’s an increased amount of pressure that says, “I have so much more to do. People are ghosting me more or they’re not following up or they’re falling out”. And you don’t have the time to go back and send the follow-up email.

So mental health is a big, big concern. A lot of people are hitting their breaking point. Losing candidates to scheduling frustrations is another thing added onto their plates.

I thought the data on women was really interesting. But it makes sense because we all know the amount of bias and unconscious judgment occurring when a child comes into the room during a meeting.

Also, you have no idea if the person that you just treated unfairly and didn’t give a response might have 2 million followers on TikTok, and one video could totally disrupt not only your recruiting process, but your whole business.

Employers say they want to hire people with influence, but then they’re scared of it.

What recommendations would you have to people looking to improve this area?

You need to look at your data first.

And it could be something simple like a survey where we just send out a short Google form to recent hires and say: what did you like, what did you not like, give me some feedback. And make it anonymous so they can tell you.

And then – and I know it’s hard to hear criticism and most employers do not want to do this – but we still need to talk to people that didn’t get hired.

Quit being in denial about it. You need to sit down and say, Hey, candidate, I know you didn’t get the job. And I probably ghosted you and didn’t give you a follow-up. But rate your experience with me so that you can understand what you really want.

From there, you can pick which technologies, tools, processes you want to put in place that will be the most impactful because you have the information right in front of you.

What was your reaction to the findings about gender?

I really feel like the gender thing is big because I’ve been doing a lot of work on the pink collar recession. There’s a lot of women exiting the workforce right now. And there’s fear that we’re going to be falling back 30 years.

Talk to your diverse candidates or recent hires and ask for feedback, ask questions.

If you truly want to be an inclusive organization, you need to make your hiring experience inclusive. And part of that is the scheduling tool.

If your application isn’t accessible or takes too long, these impact having an inclusive representation of candidates to pick from and hire.

For example, the group most likely to use smartphones as their sole form of technology in the US is Hispanics. And so if you make your application process so difficult on that format, you’re discriminating against this minority group.

And at some point there’s going to be lawsuits around career sites and employer hiring processes that exclude certain protected classes or minority groups. We’re just not there yet. I’m sure there’s a lawyer working on something somewhere for this very thing.

We recently surveyed 6,500 candidates in the US, UK, France and Germany. Please read our report on how interview scheduling impacts candidate experience and a business’ ability to hire.

Avatar of Jérémy Bourhis

Jérémy Bourhis

Date: 27th April 2021 | Category: HR Tech