Recruiting fairly as a creative organisation

With many arts organisations lacking a formal HR department, recruitment processes are often found wanting. With this in mind, these simple tips can help hiring manager to recruit more fairly and efficiently.

A red neon sign spelling the word VACANCY in capital letters

Whether recruiting or being recruited, the job-seeking process can be stressful for both hiring managers and candidates alike. Organisations tend to want to find the best person for the job as quickly as possible with little time, resource or budget to support this process. This can lead to rushed hiring decisions or a stressful process for candidates, causing them to withdraw or not apply to begin with. With many organisations looking to hire more diverse candidates and bring on a range of perspectives, these simple, no-cost tips are designed to help you build a more inclusive and transparent recruitment strategy.

Send interview questions in advance 

This helps candidates form better, more cohesive answers that allows them to demonstrate the required skills and reflect on their work. As well as reducing nerves and creating more productive points for discussion, this is also a great help to neurodiverse people.

Be careful of gendered language

Is gendered language putting people off applying to your job advert? Without realising it, many of us use words associated with a specific gender and research shows that language coded as specifically male can put women off from applying for jobs. Tools like the Totaljobs Gender Bias Decoder reveal hidden gender-specific words and offers alternatives to make your text less biased.

Openly communicate the recruitment timeline

Clearly communicating (and sticking to) recruitment timelines e.g interview dates, application deadline etc. gives recruiters and candidates alike the chance to prepare adequately and plan around any pre-existing commitments.

Consider your interview panel

Carefully think about who is on your interview panel and who you need to input into the decision making process. Does it accurately reflect the make up of your organisation and give an idea of the type of people the candidate will be working with? Where possible let the candidate know who will be on the panel in advance also so they can research and plan appropriate questions.

Provide recruitment packs in a different format

PDFs are not always accessible so consider providing text only and audio only formats. Depending on the seniority of the job, holding an informal open information session could also help to shed more light on the culture of the organisation and attract people who might not otherwise consider applying.

Let interviewees know the interview format in advance

Including details like where, who is on the panel, duration and any accessibility info. This allows candidates time to adequately notify you of any access requirements and puts them at ease prior.