Usage of blind hiring set to grow, say India Inc. employers in TimesJobs study

timesjobs88% of the surveyed employers said adding anonymity to the hiring process would help increase workforce diversity and quality while 44% expect its adoption to grow in the country

April 19, 2016: A large number of organizations in India, eager to reduce biases during recruitments and increase workforce diversity, are turning to ‘blind hiring’ techniques, reveals a new TJinsite study.

Blind hiring is a process gaining great popularity among global tech giants who strive to increase workforce diversity. Applicants are judged on their skills and not on the basis of where they grew up, where they studied or whether they are male or female.

Of the 1,126 employers interviewed, about 44% foresee greater usage and implementation of blind hiring process in India in the times ahead.

“Blind hiring techniques are the future of competency-based recruitment. Advantages such as personal bias removal, gender parity, workplace diversity, and the development of a skill-based meritocratic organiation are too significant to ignore. However, whenever there is a change, there is resistance. The adoption of radical blind hiring techniques is no different and requires a strong commitment from top management to support its long-term success,” says Vivek Madhukar, COO,

Spreading diversity

In the TimesJobs study titled ‘Blind Hiring: Concept, Challenges and Competence’, 70% employers from across sectors conceded to low workforce diversity and 55% said the gap was widest in terms of gender diversity.

Nearly 60% of India Inc. employers stated workforce diversity would be their prime focus in 2016.

Blind auditions

Blind hiring as a method to increase diversity came into vogue in 2014 when a US startup created a software program that added anonymity to the hiring process. This system helped organizations remove hiring biases and increase diversity within their workforce. Their idea was inspired from ‘blind auditions’ in a popular reality TV show where the judges could only hear and not see the singers they were auditioning.

Extending the show’s concept, the startup’s software removed resume details such as name, address, college/university, graduation year, educational background and other information that could reveal the candidate’s sex, race, age, ethnicity and socio-economic background. First impressions about the candidate were to be based purely on his or her skills and competency.

Taking this concept further into the IT domain, websites such as introduced coding contests, such as the national level TechGig Code Gladiators, which recognizes and rewards talent based purely on their skills, aptitude and competence – completely removing the bias of education, current employer, or other irrelevant characteristics.

In this study too, all employers clearly stated skill sets as the most important criteria for hiring. However, nearly 60% employers admitted to significant skill gaps in their current workforce.

Ending bias

In a scenario where recruiters on an average spend less than five minutes on a resume, it is natural that inherent biases may kick in. To remove such biases, employers agree that it is imperative to judge candidates solely on their competency and mask non-job specific candidate information.

Employers see several benefits in blind hiring, which allows them to focus on skills that will matter for the job roles on offer. 58% feel the process will help improve gender diversity, while nearly 30% said it helps improve ethnic diversity. Another 12% employers further felt the process helps enhance overall hiring practices by masking the inconsequential elements in a resume.

Missing cultural fitment

However, employers also felt that this technique has certain limitations. According to 44% employers, the major challenge in implementing blind hiring lies in the technique’s limitation in gauging the cultural fit of candidates with the company.

The cultural fitment aspect is directly related to emotional intelligence of candidates, which blind hiring tends to miss, they said. Gauging emotional intelligence is imperative for organizations to curb high attrition rates and have better, cohesive and productive teams.

Nearly 32% organizations admitted that their recruiters are currently not well-equipped to manage and use blind hiring software or techniques, as it required a lot of training and understanding on the recruiters’ part to accept and adhere to blind hiring protocols since they have only worked on traditional interviewing and hiring processes.

Employees wary ran a complementary online poll to know what candidates felt about blind hiring and 38% did not approve of it. When asked why, some said they would like hiring managers to know their educational pedigree and prior work experience since these can help them land the job.

While blind auditions are not a replacement for face-to-face interviews, they are gaining popularity as a first step in the hiring process as a better way to screen and shortlist potential candidates for the next round.

About, India’s leading career and recruitment portal, is one of the best-selling online ventures of the Times of India Group. Conceived and launched in 2004, currently has a candidate database of more than 25 million registered job-seekers across levels and functions who clock-in over 60 million page views a month. is positioning itself as an engagement platform and knowledge resource for insights, information, analysis and opinions on the recruitment market. Well-known for its product innovations and unmatched deliverables, has pioneered the platforms of:  for candidate engagement with company reviews and ratings as India’s leading IT network for careers, coding and competitions
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RecruiteX as the definitive demand and supply recruitment index
The TJinsite knowledge series and a lot more. serves a corporate customer base of more than 25,000 clients from across the globe. It has been serving clients like HCL, IBM, Yamaha, Godrej, HSBC, Mahindra, Bajaj Allianz, TCS and Thomson Reuters to name a few.