Recruiting with integrity

over 3 years ago by Anna Knight
Recruiting With Integrity 0321

​Across every industry and sector there are companies who deliver their services in different ways. There’s nothing wrong with a unique approach, but where things fall down is when companies lose sight of the core principles that should underpin their business. What I am talking about here can be summed up by one word – Integrity.

Integrity is subjective. On a sliding scale of 1-10, could you always say that every action or decision you take is close to ten? Someone might say it’s always a ten, yet someone else would say it’s more likely a seven. You see, it’s hard to unblur the lines and rigorously define something that is subjective. Is there a difference between holding back a small piece of information from someone, if by doing so there’s a fantastic result for that person, versus holding back a vital piece of information from the same person that would have caused them to make the opposite decision?

To someone acting with a high level of integrity it would seem obvious that transparency and honesty are always pre-requisites, but there are others who are happy, and indeed think nothing of holding back some pieces of information, so long as they get the outcome they want.

Our integrity as a people centred business in a people focused industry is something to be treated with the utmost respect and caution. One wrong move and decades of earned trust and respect could be gone - all in an instant.

So, how do we recruit with integrity and behave in a way that is free from bias, prejudice or discrimination?

For me, this begins with the culture of a business. What are the values the business holds? How are they shared with colleagues? What behaviours are expected? How are challenges to the values and culture handled? Are they role modelled by key people throughout the organisation? Are they a core part of ongoing people check-ins? Integrity needs to be a core pillar and not some side-line word on a poster in the back of the staff room.

I recently introduced an exceptional candidate with great and relevant experience into the perfect role. I was shocked when she told me that since moving to the UK over a decade ago she has faced various forms of discrimination, often stemming from her name, accent and gender. She has struggled to get interviews, let alone early-stage conversations with hiring managers or recruiters.

What this tells me is that, willingly or otherwise, there are individuals who are judging and casting people aside based on a few pieces of information on a piece of paper. In some companies there might be a toxic culture enabling pervasive conscious bias, and in others, it might be an unconscious bias that is at play.

Regardless of which it is, we are in a business community where this extremely negative lived experience still exists for many people, irrespective of skill or job fit. Do parts of the business community push out narratives around celebration days and diversity actions because it’s expected? Or, do they believe it, but it falls down because they don’t put enough energy into educating their people and creating the right value cultures? Or, which I hope it isn’t, do they simply lack any form of integrity in their actions?

Let’s talk

To chat further about recruiting with integrity, please get in touch with me over here.

The information contained in this article does not constitute business advice and should not be acted on as such. This content is based on our understanding in March 2021. Head Resourcing are not liable for the information contained on any third-party websites linked to this article.

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