Sometimes the Most Qualified Applicant Is Not the Most Obvious

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Hiring managers often give preference to (and even hold out for) those who have the “right” specific last roles, the “right” internships, a specific number of years of experience or graduated from the “right” university. Interestingly, those companies often state bold goals in improving diversity, yet their upstream talent practices diminish the likelihood of increasing diversity.

In defense of slow improvement in diversity, companies often cite, and even complain, that the talent “pipeline” simply does not have enough diversity, so how could they possibly hire diverse candidates out of a non-diverse pipeline without compromising on skills? Of course the potential candidate pool is not diverse if the specs for candidates reflect exactly who you already have on the board!

Research shows that in hiring, the deck is often stacked against low-income and minority candidates — especially when it comes to the technology sector. Degree requirements alone drastically limit the candidate pool, with approximately 70 percent of American adults over 25 finding themselves without an undergraduate degree — particularly racial/ethnic minorities or low-income adults. For those employers specifically focused on top-tier or Ivy League graduates, their talent pool is further limited to less than 1 percent of college graduates.

Read more at TechCrunch