Representative Bias in Hiring Skilled Professionals

Topics: Employment, Interview, Question Pages: 2 (584 words) Published: May 21, 2012
Paper #2- Representativeness Bias

Throughout the meeting and hiring process, the selection of capable candidates frequently relies on producing a decision using intuitive judgment. Using heuristics in employee selection requires applying your common sense to select the top individual for the occupation, while sticking to local, state and federal rules for employment. Some companies employ hiring managers that have a little bit of a different idea on who to choose to hire. A large pool of all different types of candidates will show up for an interview, especially in an economy like this. Applicants will consist of all different types of people: short, tall, skinny, fat, black, white, etc. Many interviewers tend to take a larger interest in applicants who are most like themselves without actually using their common sense and looking through the qualifications of the applicant, this is referred to as the representativeness bias. It is remarkable to work with people that are much like yourself because it is very easy to relate with them but that’s never the most important thing. The problem here is that no matter how well you get along with a person, this person may not be qualified enough to compete all of the tasks that their job requires. Because a hiring manager enjoys the company of an applicant, or appreciates his/her appearance they may skip out on a person with higher knowledge in the duties expected to complete a job. Upper management in a law firm would not appreciate a newly hired lawyer that knows more about football than he does about law. That is one of many possible effects of the representativeness bias. These biases largely affect the hiring process. The appearance, race, or interests of a person should not be tied in with the hiring process because it simply has nothing to do with the applicant’s possible performance. There are definitely several ways to reduce the representativeness bias. A set of questions is always asked at an interview by...
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