Part 3: 5 ways to improve the objectivity in your recruitment processes - Objective recruitment

Over the previous two parts of this series I've given some examples on what objectivity within recruitment is, how it could be applied to your processes and why it is important to me and why it should be of importance to you. In the following article I'll wrap it up into 5 ways to improve the objectivity in your recruitment processes.


The potential pros and cons with objective recruitment was covered in Part 1 and Part 2, but in order to give you some hands on advice - you’ll find the list below. Some of the advice listed are only applicable if you decide on it beforehand, while other pieces could easily be thrown in after you’ve started - however, I’ll highly recommend you to do them all and to initiate them before you even start the process.


1. Decide on what matters.

What’s key in order to ensure your internal process is even partly objective is to decide on what measurable parameters you’ll base your choice on before you actually initiate the recruitment process. It’s obvious that you as a team will get closer to a good discussion on what candidate to hire if you are looking at the same variables, but what may be even more obvious is the opposite: if you don’t, there is a high risk your own biases will play a bigger role than needed - and that hierarchy will make the choices in the end. Not good.


2. Use tests.

Yes you should! Even considering the bad examples of what could happen with tests if used the wrong way which was described in part 2, you should probably use them as a complement. Important though: as in number 1, decide on what you are looking for and why it’s important to you before you start. There are a lot of good tools out there, just make sure you know how to use them properly.


3. Anonymize

Heard this one before? Got it. Still not doing it? I get it - harder to actually do it. But go with baby steps. Make sure you are anonymizing the first part (reviewing applications), either by setting up an internal process or by using an ATS to help you out. Why it’s good for you?

Here is why.


4. Solo show? No-go!

Letting the candidate, your potential colleague, co-founder, Head of Engineering or manager meet more people for a chat than you actually, generally, creates value both ways. Yes, it’s a bit of a hassle to sync calendars (believe me, I know from my time as a recruiter at Northvolt) but it actually creates a lot of value. On one hand, the candidate will be able to get a better view of your company by just extending the interview by 30 minutes. On the other hand, you let your team feel involved in the recruitment process and (given that you listen to number five in this list) the hiring decision as well. Reminder: make sure to decide and communicate to everyone involved in the process, including the candidate - who will be involved and how much time it will take.


5. Evaluate the candidates separately.

Done with the interviews? Great - time for evaluation. Let’s get everyone in a conference room and throw arguments and quotes at each other until we hate each other”.

Maybe not. A better way of doing this is to let everyone evaluate the candidates individually first, if there is consensus regarding hire/reject there is no need for evaluation - if not: evaluate. But keep in mind to only discuss the bullets that there wasn’t consensus on. Easy to miss that. Pro tip: make sure that you know who’ll decide in the end. To make sure what hat everyone is wearing in a meeting is of high importance - for everyone (even Daniel Ek).


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