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New Study Reveals Discrepancy in Job Callbacks Based on Name Characteristics



Last Updated on April 12, 2024 by Robert C. Hoopes

A recent study conducted by economists has revealed troubling findings about racial bias in the job application process at Fortune 500 companies. The study involved filing fake job applications for 11,000 entry-level positions, with the results showing that job applicants with white-sounding names were more likely to receive callbacks than those with Black-sounding names.

On average, white applicants were called back approximately 9% more often than Black applicants. Shockingly, some companies exhibited a bias as high as 24% in favor of white applicants. However, the study also found that Federal contractors and more profitable companies showed less racial bias, calling back both racial groups at similar rates.

To combat this systemic issue, experts suggest implementing strategies such as training staff to recognize and reduce bias, involving multiple recruiters in hiring decisions, collecting data on candidates to track and address disparities, and standardizing or anonymizing the hiring process.

Career coach Dorianne St Fleur emphasized the importance of job seekers not blaming themselves for bias they may face in the hiring process. Instead, she advised leaning on their support network for assistance and prioritizing applying to companies known for their inclusivity.

Overall, this study highlights the pervasive nature of racial bias in the job market and offers potential solutions for creating a more equitable hiring process. By raising awareness of these issues and implementing proactive measures, companies can work towards reducing discrimination and fostering a more inclusive workplace environment.

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