"Blinded" application/resume reviews

  1. 0 Have any of you or your facilities utilized blinded application/resume reviewing systems? By blinded, I mean that all demographic information (name, address, telephone, e-mail address) are removed from the application prior to review by the hiring manager. Even better would be if every resume or application was reformatted into plain text so that from a presentation standpoint every applicant was on even ground.

    If you've never used or even considered anything like this, what are your thoughts on such a system?

    Thanks,

    nicuguy
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  3. Visit  nicuguy profile page

    About nicuguy, BSN, RN

    nicuguy has '8+' year(s) of experience and specializes in 'NICU, L&D, Lactation'. From 'USA'; Joined Oct '06; Posts: 216; Likes: 260.

    11 Comments so far...

  4. Visit  MrChicagoRN profile page
    1
    Name is helpful. Maybe I, or a coworker, knows them-or of them. Reputation is important, and may influence if I want to see them or not.
    Address and email, largely irrelevant, but if I have a bunch of good candidates, and can't see everyone, the person 50 miles away gets seen after equal candidates who live closer.

    When their resumes come through our online application, everyone's paperwork gets dumbed down; but that isn't intentional.
    If someone puts in the effort to create a superior product, that should count for something.

    TIP: Always bring a nice clean copy of your resume with you, just in case.
    llg likes this.
  5. Visit  nicuguy profile page
    0
    Quote from MrChicagoRN
    Name is helpful. Maybe I, or a coworker, knows them-or of them. Reputation is important, and may influence if I want to see them or not.
    Address and email, largely irrelevant, but if I have a bunch of good candidates, and can't see everyone, the person 50 miles away gets seen after equal candidates who live closer.

    When their resumes come through our online application, everyone's paperwork gets dumbed down; but that isn't intentional.
    If someone puts in the effort to create a superior product, that should count for something.

    TIP: Always bring a nice clean copy of your resume with you, just in case.
    I appreciate your response. Name may be helpful, but there is ample evidence that it can be harmful due to unconscious biases, particularly toward names that are stereotypically black or Middle Eastern-sounding. If a person applying is known to the staff or manager, the applicant should have ways of letting them know they applied. When someone has that good of a reputation, it isn't hard to find ways to move them through the system. Address and e-mail are not at all irrelevant again due to individual biases on where people live or perceptions regarding their personal life/non-relevant factors if they are using an e-mail address that may not follow the professional convention including some form of first and last name, etc.

    I am not suggesting that this information should never be revealed to the hiring manager and HR. I am suggesting that there is some benefit in considering each application for interview on the experiences and exploits contained within instead of extraneous information that has no impact on the person's actual or potential performance in the role. I probably should have stated that this question was pure speculation and pondering the logistics and impact of using such a system. As a nurse with a business degree, trying to improve processes and equality are very important to me.

    thanks again,
    nicuguy
  6. Visit  Orca profile page
    0
    I'll go you one better. In their infinite wisdom, our HR department has decided that we don't get to see employment applications at all during the interview process. They have also told us that we cannot ask applicants to bring them in, and we are not allowed to look at resumes or reference letters. Someone got the bright idea that this "levels the playing field". Our rejections from probation have probably tripled since they did this.
  7. Visit  Havin' A Party! profile page
    0
    Think three of the four items listed as excluded are relevant.

    Their telephone isn't, IMHO.
  8. Visit  llg profile page
    2
    I can see it during the first stage of screening ... but at some point in the process, I need to be able to get a sense of "who the person is" so that I can make a judgment about whether they care enough about the job to do a good job ... whether they can interact with patients, staff, etc. well. I don't believe you can adequately interview someone without knowing at least their name, what their background is, etc.

    There is more -- and should be more -- to selecting candidates for a job than just their categorical/numerical information. It can't all be test scores, grade point averages, etc. At some point, you need to talk to the person and find out who they are. Selecting wisely is part of the "art" of being a manager. Whoever thinks that only "objective facts" and "numbers" should be considered doesn't fully understand management and does not respect the art of management ... or the positive element that human judgment can bring to the task.
    NEWRNC and Orca like this.
  9. Visit  Orca profile page
    0
    Quote from llg
    There is more -- and should be more -- to selecting candidates for a job than just their categorical/numerical information. It can't all be test scores, grade point averages, etc. At some point, you need to talk to the person and find out who they are. Selecting wisely is part of the "art" of being a manager. Whoever thinks that only "objective facts" and "numbers" should be considered doesn't fully understand management and does not respect the art of management ... or the positive element that human judgment can bring to the task.
    I completely agree. In addition to not allowing us to review applications, our HR department has now decided that we have to justify not hiring anyone who achieves above an arbitrary score cutoff on the interview, that scoring above this level means that they have "passed" the interview. I explained to them that hiring a health care professional is not a pass-fail proposition. I put it to them that if they were the one receivng care, they would be much better off with someone who was screened by a panel of professionals who had done the job and knew what was involved in it rather than someone who was hired because they had enough points. The people we hire may be making life-and-death decisions. This isn't like hiring someone to answer the phone, and it shouldn't be treated like it is.

    I have interviewed a number of nurses who did reasonably well answering interview questions, but they clearly weren't suited to our operation. Some did not have a good command of the English language. Others answered well but exhibited bizarre behavior during the interview (one recent applicant repeatedly laughed at her own answers and at some of the questions). Some exhibited problems with following orders or getting along with people in authority. There are a number of reasons that you don't hire people who interview well.

    I am a DON in a correctional facility, and our type of work definitely isn't for everyone. Personality attributes can sometimes be almost as important as tecnhical skills.
  10. Visit  Havin' A Party! profile page
    0
    Think I know what you mean, orca.

    But I wouldn't consider someone who doesn't speak / understand English well, or comes off as "bizarre," or who demos probs "following orders" or "getting along" with management as an applicant that "interviewed well."
  11. Visit  nicuguy profile page
    0
    Quote from Havin' A Party!
    Think three of the four items listed as excluded are relevant.

    Their telephone isn't, IMHO.
    I can only assume that you mean that name, address, and e-mail address are relevant. I'm curious how that information can tell you objectively in your initial screening about my potential performance in a role?

    Quote from Orca
    I'll go you one better. In their infinite wisdom, our HR department has decided that we don't get to see employment applications at all during the interview process. They have also told us that we cannot ask applicants to bring them in, and we are not allowed to look at resumes or reference letters. Someone got the bright idea that this "levels the playing field". Our rejections from probation have probably tripled since they did this.
    I find this to be a silly policy. Clearly the information on their resume regarding their previous positions, education, and skills is relevant and should be known to the hiring manager ahead of time. Your HR department sounds like it has a few issues.

    Quote from llg
    I can see it during the first stage of screening ... but at some point in the process, I need to be able to get a sense of "who the person is" so that I can make a judgment about whether they care enough about the job to do a good job ... whether they can interact with patients, staff, etc. well. I don't believe you can adequately interview someone without knowing at least their name, what their background is, etc.

    There is more -- and should be more -- to selecting candidates for a job than just their categorical/numerical information. It can't all be test scores, grade point averages, etc. At some point, you need to talk to the person and find out who they are. Selecting wisely is part of the "art" of being a manager. Whoever thinks that only "objective facts" and "numbers" should be considered doesn't fully understand management and does not respect the art of management ... or the positive element that human judgment can bring to the task.
    I am not arguing that this information should never be made available, only that the initial screening should be done without regards to information that has NO relevance to a person's ability to perform in a job role. If you are actually interviewing someone, of course their name is important, though the goal of a blinded system is to ensure that qualified applicants get to the interview process without being weeded out in a conscious or subconscious manner due to irrelevant factors like their name, address, etc. Test scores, GPA, etc have been shown to have little relevance at all. Google just finished a HUGE study of their hiring factors and showed that once you get a person about three years out of school, there is almost no correlation between a high GPA, test scores, and their performance in a job role.

    As for the art of being a manager, I won't disagree with you that there is an important human element involved. I am simply pointing out that when it comes to hiring and interviewing, our ability to choose the right candidate is very poor because of the human factor.
  12. Visit  Havin' A Party! profile page
    0
    Hey there, Nicu!

    Here's how I see name, address and e-addy relevant:

    NAME: Possibly someone on the selection team or fellow / sister staff member may have worked alongside the applicant and may be able to furnish fabulous info on performance, fit, etc.

    ADDRESS: Ability to physically get to work timely, if at all, during trying times... snow and ice storms, emergencies, etc. May also necessitate addressing the issue (NPI) if the commute would be extraordinary long.

    E-ADDY: Ridiculous e-addresses may call into question maturity, level of professionalism, or other concern.
  13. Visit  nicuguy profile page
    0
    Quote from Havin' A Party!
    Hey there, Nicu!

    Here's how I see name, address and e-addy relevant:

    NAME: Possibly someone on the selection team or fellow / sister staff member may have worked alongside the applicant and may be able to furnish fabulous info on performance, fit, etc.

    ADDRESS: Ability to physically get to work timely, if at all, during trying times... snow and ice storms, emergencies, etc. May also necessitate addressing the issue (NPI) if the commute would be extraordinary long.

    E-ADDY: Ridiculous e-addresses may call into question maturity, level of professionalism, or other concern.
    Hi Havin' A Party!

    Regarding the relevancy of the name, if a person is known to someone in the unit, they would have ways of getting their information to the right people. There is usually a "referred by" or "who do you know who works here" section on the application. For those who do not have the benefit of being known or knowing someone in the unit, blinding their name for the INITIAL screen works toward eliminating biases that have been shown to be present in individuals in the hiring system.

    With addresses I can see a potential for consideration if there were two or more applicants with identical qualifications. Even though address/physical location is not a protected category, if someone indicated they were able to meet all the requirements of the job (scheduling/on-call/etc), I'd still be careful asking them for details on how they plan to meet them. Also, since many areas (particularly in major cities) have a historical racial or ethnic makeup, one would have to be very careful that not hiring someone from a particular location who is qualified and able to meet the requirements doesn't fall afoul of any employment discrimination law, particularly if the hiring manager has asked questions about being able to meet the requirements and received answers that would be satisfactory from ANY potential applicant.

    E-mail address: Again, this would involve making a determination about someone's actual skills and previous experience on the basis of a way to contact them. While I don't disagree that someone with the e-mail address "SexyStud@hotmail.com" would be less likely overall to get a call-back, the address itself tells you nothing about the person's abilities. If you had interviewed a candidate who had a great interview, high quality references, and demonstrated education and work experience, would you really no longer consider them based on their e-mail address?

    My whole idea behind this notion is remove potential areas of bias that have nothing to do with actual performance. As I noted in a previous post, Google has released information from its own hiring studies that other commonly used measures and interview techniques have little to no correlation with actual job performance. There is a lot of improvement left to be made in the hiring/interview process, though that isn't limited to healthcare.

    Thanks for your response!
  14. Visit  Havin' A Party! profile page
    0
    Quote from nicuguy
    ... if a person is known to someone in the unit, they would have ways of getting their information to the right people...
    Not necessarily. Just a quick anecdote: In my previous position, I didn't realize two co-workers from my past were employed there, until I met them during orientation.

    " ...With addresses I can see a potential for consideration if there were two or more applicants with identical qualifications"...

    Never encountered any applicants with the above characteristic.

    "... Even though address/physical location is not a protected category, if someone indicated they were able to meet all the requirements of the job (scheduling/on-call/etc), I'd still be careful asking them for details on how they plan to meet them... "

    First off, by "address," I intended only the city of current residence.

    When we come across applicants from distant locations (say more than an hour away), we make it a point to actually discuss facility expectations for coverage during emergencies. I think it's important to be clear and upfront about this. Long commutes just raise natural questions.

    As an example, not that it was a requirement, but when I applied for a spot out-of-State, I made sure an explanation about my pending relocation to a nearby community was included in my letter of transmittal.

    "... the e-mail address "SexyStud@hotmail.com"... the address itself tells you nothing about the person's abilities... "

    Agree with the above. However, to me, "abilities" are not the sole determiner... or even the most significant quality, of an excellent hire.

    Skills are typically more readily "teachable." But when the lack of good judgment, professionalism, common sense, and good taste is readily demonstrated in an app for one of our licensed nursing positions, it just about guarantees a no-hire decision.

    The hiring call is a critical one. And an expensive undertaking. If the hiree ends up leaving prematurely, it has serious impacts on many at the facility.

    Most managers I've known, I'd say, would prefer to have more information than less before undertaking a major decision.

    Good luck with your new process. Please let us know in six months or so how it's worked out in practice. Thanks!


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