A recent PriceWaterhouseCoopers survey shows that 86% of female and 74% of male millennials (those aged 18-34) consider employers’ policies on diversity, equality and inclusion when deciding which company to work for. Having a fair and equal culture is a big draw!

In addition, a cornerstone for maintaining equal pay means making objective decisions about compensation for each new employee. Otherwise, it’s easy to fall back into old habits!

Here are some simple ways you can tweak your hiring practices to ensure you’re setting the stage for fair and equal pay, long-term:

Screening Candidates

There are a lot of practical, simple steps you can take to ensure you have a fair and objective candidate screening process:

  • Remove age-related questions from your application process.
  • Remove previous salary as a question asked either in an online form, or during the interview process.
  • Coach your managers to evaluate candidates based on objective lines of questioningas opposed to situational experiences. Request data points and facts when inquiring about an applicant’s past experiences.
  • Provide practical assignments that directly correlate to the work that is required for the job as a method for evaluating skills and qualifications.
  • Consider “Blind Recruitment” methodologies. There are many ways to pilot this process in a low-impact way. For instance, a recruiter can remove candidate’s names before reviewing them with hiring managers. Many recruiting software companies are building this feature in their platforms to make it easy on teams.
  • Check out tools like GapJumpers, which help companies setup objective assessments as a way to test candidates for skills and qualifications.
  • Don’t use “culture fit” as a screening method. This can lead to a homogenous and unequal team over time. “Culture fit” is not an objective way to determine whether a candidate will succeed or not on the job. Instead, cite specific examples from the interview as to why the applicant might lack the necessary interpersonal or teamwork skills. McKinsey has found that diverse teams perform 35% better; so it can be argued that a diverse culture is the best culture! The topic of “Culture fit” is worth a much deeper discussion, and we will publish an entire post on this later.


In a fair environment, negotiation involves discussing the candidate’s skill, educational background, and experience.

  • If a candidate has a significant amount of specialized experience, consider moving them into a specialist role. For example, a Security Engineer is more specialized than a Software Engineer, and can command a greater salary in this competitive market.
  • When candidates push for extra compensation, consider the role and level they are applying for. If they are looking for Senior-level compensation, do they have the skills and experience to perform at that level? Does the team need another Senior-level person? When that’s the case, consider bringing them on at a Senior-level, but expect that extra level of performance from them. If not, it’s not fair to others on the team to pay a less-qualified individual more.
  • Consider offering a merit-based compensation evaluation 90 days into the job, so applicants can prove they are worth being compensated above the baseline. This makes it clear that your company judges employees based on their performance rather than negotiation skills.

Organizations that adopt fair and equal hiring strategies attract and recruit top applicants! Interested in what we can do for your organization? Contact us!