Collecting equal opportunities data during the recruitment process can be seen as time consuming and not a practice that adds value to a business. However, those that embrace this information and utilise it to its full potential, can prove that it is more than useful to a company.
HR Aspects Magazine spoke to Chris Keeling, managing director of e-recruitment software solutions provider, Jobtrain. He explained more about collating and reporting equal opportunities statistics. “Whilst it is not mandatory for candidates to provide information about their race, religion or age, businesses should view it as key data in helping them to attract the best candidates. If you unwittingly exclude sectors of the community in even seeing your jobs, let alone applying for them, then any employer is already reducing the talent pool available to them.”
Companies should be looking at what they are trying to achieve by collecting the data, as equal opportunities is irrelevant when selecting the best candidate. “Information that is gathered on equal opportunities during the recruitment process is important to identify whether the applicants for a position reflect the compositions of the communities in which we live,” continued Chris. “For example, if only applicants that are white and male put themselves forward for a position, a business can look at how they can reach other groups in the future.
“It is also valuable to report on the percentage of people that have applied for and also have been offered positions. If a company ever needs evidence for an unlawful discrimination claim, or is tendering for a large contract, having collected the equal opportunities data will certainly help,” continued Chris. “In that regard there is a very strong commercial case to have excellent monitoring of this data – it’s not just about ticking boxes to comply with a policy statement”.
How Do You Collect Equal Opportunities Data?
Gathering this information needn’t be time consuming or take up valuable resources. There are many applicant tracking systems which can collate data for HR teams, as well as managing the recruitment process itself. These systems allow reports to be run quickly and easily over different timescales and different segments without placing any administration burden on the business.