Interviewer Bias And Its Types

What exactly is interviewer bias, and why are we discussing this today? Simply put, interviewer bias is when the interviewer makes an assumption about an interviewee that clouds their judgement and reduces the objectivity of the interview. While it’s a concept that’s mostly seen in qualitative research and analysis, it also impacts hiring decisions and recruitment.

Interviewer bias isn’t just unfair to the candidates but it can also lead to legal issues in some cases. Companies with fair and hiring practices tend to be more creative and yield better profits in their industry as they refrain from bias and hire the right person for the right job.

There are many types of biases, and a lot of them influence hiring decisions. Some of the most common ones to look out for are as follows:

  • Affinity Bias :

Affinity Bias occurs when interviewers have a natural affinity to a certain candidate that applied for the post because of the interests that they share and the things that they have in common. For example if the interviewer discovers that the candidate that they’re interviewing went to the same university as them they may succumb to affinity bias, while being completely unaware of the fact.

  • Confirmation Bias :

This kind of bias is commonly seen in interviewers that favor candidates because they support their beliefs. In other words, the interviewer may only look at what they want to see and ignore the information that disproves them. To minimize this kind of bias, interviewers need to make sure they don’t base their hiring decisions based on the interview alone.

  • Conformity Bias :

Conformity bias takes place when the interviewers decision depends on what others think. Humans are afraid of being ridiculed and are subject to peer pressure, it’s only natural. This could happen during the interview phase of recruitment where only one of the interviewers thought the candidate did well on the interview, or vice versa.

Interviewers need to make sure they don’t fall victim to these biases and put their companies at risk by hiring the wrong person for the job.