There are so many reasons that age diversity is important in the workplace. When your staff is made up of employees of different ages, it helps bring a variety of skills, experiences, and perspectives to the table, which can promote greater innovation and creative solutions. Employees with more experience may bring years of insight and wisdom to the job, whereas less experienced workers may provide fresh ideas and a different perspective.
A diverse workforce tends to be more productive, as employees with different backgrounds and experiences can bring unique insights and approaches to problem-solving.
However, age discrimination can be a major issue in the workplace. In fact, in 2021, 1 in every 5 complaints to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) had to do with age. Two-thirds of employees ages 45 to 74 say they have seen or experienced age discrimination at work.
Removing age bias from the hiring process is an important way to create a diverse and inclusive workplace. Here are some strategies you can use to minimize age bias in your hiring process:
Eliminate age-related wording from job descriptions
Avoid using terms like “recent graduate” or “entry-level position” in job postings. These phrases may exclude older candidates who have the necessary skills and experience. As an alternative, focus on the required qualifications and job responsibilities. Words like “digital native” or “digital savvy” may imply a preference for younger candidates.
Use objective selection criteria
Develop clear and tangible criteria for evaluating candidates based on their skills, experience, and qualifications. A standardized assessment or a structured interview process may help to more fairly evaluate all candidates in a consistent manner.
Avoid age-related questions
Do not ask candidates about their age, date of birth, or graduation dates during the interview process. Instead, ask task-specific questions that relate to their ability to perform the job. Focus on the candidate’s skills, experience, and how they may fit with the job and company culture.
Expand your candidate pool
Consider a variety of ways to attract a diverse candidate pool. By using a variety of recruiting methods, you can source a diverse group of candidates. Reach out to community organizations, use social media, post on online job boards, and attend career fairs. A variety of approaches will appeal to a wider variety of potential employees.
Train hiring managers
Educate others in your organization on age bias and how to avoid it in the hiring process. Focus on the importance of diversity and inclusion, provide tools and resources to help them more fairly evaluate candidates, and create objective processes to minimize age discrimination in your hiring process.
These strategies can help create a hiring process that is fair, inclusive, and free from age bias. Need help filling your funnel with potential candidates? Let InVista help.