Even though women account for more than 50% of the U.S. population, gender diversity remains a key goal of many HR departments and recruiting initiatives. This is particularly true when it comes to leadership positions, in which women are even less well represented.
But it often isn’t for lack of trying. A very large number of American businesses have diversity initiatives in an effort to increase the number of women and people of color in their organizations, but they often struggle to achieve those goals.
How Gender Impacts the Job Application Process
A recent report by LinkedIn discusses the ways gender impacts the job application process. In addition to the general discussion of gender differences, the report also points to some potentially actionable tips for companies that are looking to add more gender diversity in their organizations.
The report highlights five specific findings:
- Women tend to be more selective about the jobs they apply to than men, with women being 14% less likely to apply for a job after viewing it compared with men.
- Men are more likely to ask for a referral, showing a 68% likelihood to “ask for a referral” before applying to a job compared with 32% of women.
- When women do apply, they are more likely to get hired. Despite applying more conservatively, women are 16% more likely than men to get hired for the jobs they apply to.
- When women appear in recruiter search results, they are 13% less likely to be viewed by recruiters than men.
- Sixty-eight percent of women say salary range and benefits are the most important parts of a job description.
The implications of the report and these data are that there are some specific things that women and men do differently when it comes to the application process. These differences can—and have been shown to—negatively impact the progress of women in the workplace.
A Search for Solutions
Organizations are understandably concerned about ensuring a level playing field for both men and women when it comes to job opportunities and levels of pay.
In addition to the findings above, LinkedIn’s report also points to some suggestions for actionable steps recruiters and HR professionals can take to help boost their female representation. In a follow-up post, we’ll take a closer look at these recommendations.
After the application and hiring process, the onboarding process can be a critical opportunity for positively impacting the career trajectory of women who have joined your workforce. We’ll be taking a close look at onboarding in our upcoming Workforce L&D conference. If you’re interested in learning more about diverse hiring, you will also have the opportunity to attend RecruitCon 2019, which will be co-located with Workforce L&D and HR Comply. We hope you’ll join us—click here to learn more.