Is Name Blind the Future of Recruitment?

It was no surprise to those in the know that name blind applications received national press back in October 2015. The body of evidence pointing towards discrimination in the recruitment process had risen to unprecedented levels. David Cameron, therefore, announced the start of a new name blind scheme. Thus, name blind applications- the process of concealing any personal information on the candidate’s initial application- will become the status quo for a number of organisations by 2017. The UK government hopes that this initiative will create a more objective hiring process in the preliminary stages.

But are name blind applications simply an equal opportunities exercise or are there some tangible business benefits as well?

Can diversity actually drive profitability? Three major studies think that it could.

First, a McKinsey study of 180 publically traded companies in France, Germany, the UK and USA found that companies with more diverse senior teams were more profitable. In fact, their findings were startlingly consistent across the businesses they examined. Those with more diverse senior teams had a 53% higher return on Equity and 14% higher Earnings Before Interest and Taxes than less diverse counterparts.

A second study by Grant Thornton examined the link between diversity in decision making and business growth prospects. The study encompassed companies in India, the UK and US. It found that companies with all male boards were an estimated £460 billion worse off than those with a diverse set of decision makers.

Finally, the Peterson Institute for International Economics conducted another comprehensive study. Encompassing a global survey of over 21000 firms in 91 countries, the study considered the presence of women in corporate leadership. The results were remarkably similar results to the McKinsey and Grant Thornton studies. The Peterson Institute found that the presence of women in corporate leadership may improve firm performance. 

While the academic evidence may be compelling- there are still a number of unanswered questions. For example, how do name blind applications work in practice? Does an organisation need an Applicant Tracking System to manage name blind applications? And, perhaps crucially- are there any negatives?

To help answer these, Eploy are presenting a learning session at the CIPD Recruitment Exhibition on June 16th 2016.  Join us there to discuss the additional benefits of name blind applications and how to you can implement them into your hiring process. 


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