Reducing Bias by Auditing Job Descriptions

March 19th, 2024

Job descriptions. What do you think about them? Are they just a means-to-an-end? A standard, mundane, copy and paste step to creating a job req? Or are they considered part of your hiring strategy?

You probably know where we’re going with this but… they matter. They’re the first impression your candidates can get about the role and company.

And if it doesn’t make a good impression, you could be leaving top talent in the field.

Learn how to better audit job descriptions, reduce hiring bias, and create hiring experiences that are positive for both candidates and TA teams. 

Do degrees matter?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, job requirements are going to drastically change in the next few years. In fact, we can expect 60% of new jobs won’t require degrees by the year 2030

Today’s talent teams are citing an overwhelming skills gap— 69% to be exact. If that’s the case, we should probably be looking beyond traditional methods of hiring. The ones that include resume reviews, past accolades, and degrees held. “Rearview HR” is the idea that these factors  are the only predictors of success—when evaluating talent based on skills and competencies are the actual indicators of who’s going to be great today and tomorrow. 

McKinsey & Company partner Bryan Hancock makes a poignant suggestion, “Look at a college degree: if it’s not needed for a job, not having one shouldn’t be a barrier to somebody getting the job.”

Reduce bias

Resumes are one-dimensional—and yet your candidates are anything but. Factors like name, alma mater, and title are nothing more than dots in a candidate’s story. 

What they can do is vastly more important than what they have done. 

And in fact, the resume can be a mode of bias—even if unconscious. A Harvard Business School study titled, “Dismissed by Degrees” calls out the inequitable impact of diploma bias. 

“[They] found more than 60 percent of employers rejected otherwise qualified candidates in terms of skills or experience simply because they did not have a college diploma…. One of the researchers’ most revealing findings was that millions of job postings listed college degree requirements for positions that were currently held by workers without them.” 


Resumes can serve as  an inequitable “paper ceiling” keeping millions of candidates from jobs they’re qualified to perform. 

Who’s to say a college graduate has more skills than a candidate without a degree? At its core, that’s an assumption rooted in bias.

Human Potential Intelligence equips your teams with tools rooted in science and data-analysis and, therefore, provides candidates with an experience rooted in fairness.  

Structuring your interviews is the first step in building a fairer hiring process. HireVue Structured Interviewing brings speed and quality together. Teams can easily build science-backed, job-specific interviews designed to help uncover the potential in all candidates. Scale with ease through powerful automated workflows built on an enterprise ready platform—and create fairer, more positive experiences for all your candidates. 

Building a skills-based hiring strategy

So you’re ready to start changing how you hire… but where do you start? Building a skills-based hiring strategy is easy with HireVue—we have an assessment for every job at every level, so you can rest assured you’re hiring the most qualified candidates no matter the role. 

With a vast library of skill-based questions, TA teams can identify the most qualified candidates—no matter what’s listed on a resume. Assessments identify what talent can do, are rooted in data analysis, and offer insights to candidates after their interviews.

Virtual Job Tryout®: Go beyond conventional cognitive and behavioral assessment. The Virtual Job Tryout® provides innovative candidate exercises that simulate the job and offer evidence of how the candidate will perform against competencies proven to be crucial to on-the-job success.


Find My Fit: Present candidates with all roles that they fit—not just the ones they search for. Find My Fit helps easily identify what roles best match candidate potential. After a brief assessment of interests, personality, and background, Find My Fit compares the answers to your organization’s open opportunities, recommending the roles that are the best fit for the candidate. Recommending roles based on the candidate’s interests and soft skills drives candidates to those roles that might be a better fit— and can help improve your diversity in the process. 


Take the next step in evaluating your talent based on skills by building a tangible plan to unlock potential. Request a demo today!