Steps to Eliminate Gender Bias From the Recruitment Process

It’s 2019, but there is still a long way to go to eliminate gender bias from the recruitment process. The gender bias problem is evident, especially in fields like the engineering sector, where only 11% of the UK’s engineering workforce is female, according to the Women’s Engineering Society (WES).

Recruiters play an essential role in reducing unconscious bias when hiring at recruitment sites. Here are some steps you can take to encourage more women into STEM professions:

Prepare gender-neutral job description

Studies show that job ads use 478,175 female and male-biased words. That is six gender-coded words per advertisement. Female-biased words include responsible, support and dependable, whereas male-biased words include chief, competitive and confident.

You can de-gender your job ads by using gender-neutral languages. With this strategy, you can appeal to all candidates and eliminate gender bias.

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De-identify CVs

This step involves hiding any information about gender while evaluating CVs. Without the gender details, it ensures that you’re judging on the CV objectively and not subjectively. However, this method doesn’t always work realistically.

Be aware of the bias during the interview process

Instead of conducting an interview on the fly, having a structured interview with a series of standardised questions will eliminate as much unconscious bias as possible.

Before the interview begins, identify the preferred answer to each question and have guidelines.

Have a diverse interview panel

It depends on the type of interview process, but you can try to select a gender diverse interview panel to reduce to risk of unconscious gender bias. You can even extend this strategy by having a mix of cultural diversity and age range.


A recent study by UC Davis showed that companies are more likely to perform better if they are gender diverse. Ensuring your recruitment is unbiased against all genders has positive effects on the entire business.

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