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6 Science-Backed Ways to Prioritize Hiring Women

In many industries, hiring women trails hiring men – often by quite a bit. In the tech world, for example, women are projected to make up only 33% of the total workforce. But only 16% of corporate directors believe that their company is doing an excellent job of recruiting a diverse workforce. How can HR professionals successfully increase the number of women in their workplace? Here are six science-backed ways that work. 

1. Make sure your job postings are inclusive 

An increase in hiring women begins with the entry to your talent pipeline – your job descriptions. Women are just as likely as men to view job descriptions, but 16% less likely to apply – even though they’re 16% more likely to get hired when they do apply.

To attract more female applicants, ensure that your job descriptions are free from biased language and vague terms like “ninja.” Instead, focus on clear descriptions of the role and expectations. And use Cangrade’s Job Description Decoder to help identify the soft skills needed in your roles. 

2. Create a female-friendly employer brand

If hiring women is a priority, but your recruitment website and social media posts mostly feature men, your employer brand needs some updates. Check to see what candidates experience when they visit your Linkedin page and the “About Us” section of your website as well, and focus on adding more female faces and stories there so women can picture themselves at your company.  

It’s also a good idea to ensure women are included in your hiring and interview process. This benefits both the candidates, who can see your commitment to women in the workplace in action, and your company, as broader perspectives are included in your hiring process.  

3. Post salary ranges 

Salary is an important component of the job for both men and women, so being clear and upfront about ranges is generally a good hiring practice. 

But for hiring women in particular, salary transparency in the hiring process shows that your company is committed to paying employees fairly. And in traditionally male-dominated industries, demonstrating that transparency up-front can encourage women to apply. 

4. Offer flexibility 

Making it clear to potential hires that your company embraces flexible working, such as hybrid or fully remote work, can help attract more female applicants to your open positions. In fact, women are 10% more likely than men to prioritize flexible working hours when looking for a new job. 

Remote and flexible working options are critical to building a workforce that is more diverse overall, in addition to helping when hiring women. 

5. Conduct structured interviews 

The interview process is where a lot of implicit bias can creep in. To ensure an unbiased approach, you should use structured interviews – where the same questions are asked of every candidate in the same order. 

Structured interviews help to ensure you’re hiring the person who is best suited for the job, not just the person who connects the most with the hiring manager. Particularly in heavily male industries, reducing the very common and often unconscious impulse to hire people who look and sound like we do is important if your goal is hiring women more often. 

6. Build a supportive workplace for women 

Building a more fair and diverse workplace doesn’t stop with hiring women – you also need to make a concerted effort to retain and promote the women you hire. Women are consistently underrepresented at every step of the corporate ladder, and the disparity worsens the higher they rise. 

Building a workplace culture that supports women at all levels of their careers, from entry-level to executive, means that your future hiring efforts will likely attract more female applicants. 

They’ll see the women in positions of power in your company, hear about how great your workplace is from women in their network, and experience an unbiased hiring process from start to finish. And that’s how you continually create a diverse and inclusive company for the long term. 

Looking for more ways to reduce bias and increase diversity in your hiring process? Cangrade can help.