As businesses consider what recruitment needs they have in the New Year, research has found that modern hiring practices are hindering diversity, as 3 out of ten employers have admitted to hiring people ‘just like them’. The study found that employers place significant importance on educational attainment (86%), cultural fit (77%), tastes and leisure pursuits (65%), and even social background (61%) – raising concerns about diversity.
Whilst recruiters are tasked with finding candidates with the right mindset, their own definition of cultural fit can lead to a lack of diversity. Another issue the study pointed out was the ‘degree premium’ with more than half of managers unwilling to take on employees without a degree and train them. This bias has left two-thirds of workers with only school qualifications being left behind in low or semi-skilled employment.
This bias continues through employment, with three in ten employees with no higher education (HE) gaining no access to workplace training to improve their skills, in comparison to 21% of those with an HE qualification. A quarter of respondents reported that colleagues with a perceived “better education” are given better opportunities.