- Roughly 20% of job applicants responding to a recent survey said an interviewer has flirted with them, according to a JDP report released Jan. 6. Fifty-eight percent of women and 71% of men reported flirting back.
- Most candidates (59%) also said they’ve been asked questions about their personal lives — and 1 in 3 said it made them uncomfortable. A third of candidates were asked about their relationship status, and 37% of women — versus 27% of men — have been asked about their plans for children.
- Among other candidate admissions, 1 in 3 said they hid things on social media or lied about their personal lives. Others said they were concerned about their appearance, worrying about their weight, whether they wore too little makeup or appeared too masculine.
Employers may run afoul of nondiscrimination laws if hiring managers aren't careful with interview inquiries. Inappropriate questions also are deal-breakers for some candidates and can cause employers to lose quality candidates, a survey from the American Staffing Association (ASA) Workforce Monitor showed.
Appearance in job interviews also surfaced as a critical concern for respondents in the JDP survey and given the results of a Harvard study, they may be right to be concerned; while bias based on race and sexual orientation has decreased, bias towards obesity is on the rise, it found. Professionals, recruiters and hiring managers must ensure that job-seekers who are otherwise qualified for a job aren't ruled out because of their weight, especially as courts consider the characteristic's relationship to nondiscrimination law.
Hiring managers can be trained to see how unconscious biases impact their hiring decisions — but also how their own hiring "metrics" may play a role in who they choose. "[H]iring managers might think they need innovative people, so they will invent their own rules like, ‘I would never hire anyone who showed up in a suit,’ or ‘I would never hire anyone over 40,’ as a rough proxy for what they really need," Daniel Chait, CEO of Greenhouse, previously told HR Dive. "Employers who hire this way are excluding people unfairly, and hurting themselves as well, as they’re basing decisions off their own subjective opinion rather than the candidate’s real qualifications."