by Evan Arryoro | June 10, 2021 |
Discrimination based on race can be observed in many communities. The corporate world has knowingly or unknowingly put in place an unjust hiring system that works against certain people. Although the world is now more open to discussions about racial biases, the employment rates of black people are still low. The reason for this isn’t their lack of talent but the companies that are noticeably favoring white people over people of color.
Besides the victims, only a few have seen firsthand how biased big companies are when recruiting their employees. Rhett Lindsey, a former recruiter from Facebook who has also worked for other big firms like Crystal Dynamics, The Walt Disney Company, and Tinder, is among the few who have seen the discrimination against applicants in the hiring process.
Despite having a stable and rewarding job at Facebook, Rhett couldn’t help but notice the racial bias that was going on in the recruitment process. Although leaving the company was a big decision to make, he knew that he had to take the step to make a change. Therefore, in November of 2020, Rhett made the decision to quit being a recruiter at Facebook. He instead spearheaded the launch of Siimee in December as a platform for hiring talents without biases. Siimee will be launched as a website and mobile application by end of 2021.
The platform battles against discrimination in the corporate industry in various ways. One of the ways is by spreading awareness. While the problem isn’t exactly something hidden, many still do not know how rampant it is. It’s among many of Siimee’s purposes to let people know the issues in recruiting and treatment of applicants of color.
As a former recruiter, Rhett can ascertain that racial bias is present in Facebook and most likely in other similarly large companies. In fact, recruiting platforms and programs that use AI algorithms discard about 75% of the resumes without considering them. There were also many instances where qualified applicants were rejected because of reasons like not being a good culture fit.
Having had enough of the biased hiring process, Rhett founded Siimee, which is designed to eliminate the biased hiring problem. The Applicant Tracking System or ATS that about 90% of large U.S. corporations use is one of the reasons behind the bias in hiring. For this reason, Rhett created a hiring tool that is unbiased and treats all applicants equally, regardless of their race, gender, ethnicity, and more.
The platform grants equal opportunities, and it focuses on the qualifications of applicants and not on their characteristics. This means that if they get hired, it will be because they deserve the position and are the best person for the role. It will not be merely so that the company can raise its reputation for hiring people of color and or minorities.
As a matter of fact, until both the employer and applicant have matched, other personal information that can be used to judge an applicant is hidden. This is done to ensure that all applicants get equal opportunity in the hiring process.
The recruiters will only get data about the candidate’s skills, background, and asperations which is what matters the most to hire them. This is done to ensure that recruiters hire for skills rather than look for characteristics that aren’t related to the skills of the candidate.
Photography by: Rhett Lindsey