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LinkedIn’s Case Study On Inclusive Job Descriptions

Recruiters are struggling to find workers while job candidates are frustrated because they’ve applied for hundreds of positions and are still coming up short. While there are several layers to the said problem, one solution is to create more inclusive job descriptions. An inclusive job description removes the focus on experience and/or education and lists skills as qualifications instead.

In the case study below, LinkedIn ran a pilot program that refocused job descriptions on skills instead of degrees. The results were astonishing! Read the highlights below or click here for the full article.

How Inclusive Job Descriptions Worked for LinkedIn

LinkedIn ran a pilot program of hiring people based on skills instead of degrees and hired 13 employees. They had all applicants apply and take a skills assessment test. If you passed the skills assessment, you were guaranteed an interview for the job. Below are the steps that LinkedIn took to prepare and successfully run the program hiring for potential not pedigree.

Job Descriptions That Emphasis Skills Needed

First, LinkedIn rewrote their job descriptions. They eliminated years of experience and education qualification and instead only listed skills as preferred qualifications. (Source)

In LinkedIn’s case, the replacement job descriptions focused on communication skills, collaboration, and work experience in dealing with challenging customer situations. (Source)

Provide a Learning Path for Candidates to Develop Skills

Next, LinkedIn provided a learning path for candidates to develop their skills. When prospective applicants went to the hiring page, they were given access to a video about the pilot program and a quick overview of the hiring process. The information and assistance given to the candidates helped more than 44% of them pass the exam with a higher score than those that didn’t take the assistance.

“People couldn’t believe that LinkedIn was going out of its way to help job seekers and set them up for success in interviewing for a role.”

Amy Schultz Head of Recruiting for LinkedIn

Easy Thorough Assessment

Finally, LinkedIn created a thorough assessment that they used to interview and rate candidates. They started this by bringing in an organizational psychologist. The psychologist interviewed current consultants to get a feel for what their typical day is like. After creating a set of questions, the psychologist went back to them for validation. LinkedIn landed on a process that started with a 20-question multiple-choice test and, for those who passed, moved to a video assessment, where candidates recorded answers to questions about how they would handle different customer scenarios. (Source)

Found New Employees

Last they hired new employees. Interestingly enough, the new employees were ones that wouldn’t have been hired according to the job description before this pilot program. More than half of the employees hired under this pilot program wouldn’t have been hired otherwise and they are very successful at the job now.

Are you thinking of revamping your job descriptions for more inclusive hiring? If so, contact the experts at HRinDemand, your total people solution.

For more articles like this, see the Free “Future Of Skills” Tool – Great for Hiring, and Hire Talent That Lasts

Melissa Marsh, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, is a human resources consultant and founder of HRinDemand, a human resources company in Reno, NV, offering expert guidance and easy-to-use tools to help small businesses with employment regulations, compliance, employee relations, and company growth.

Source: Anderson, Bruce. “How Removing Some Requirements from Your Job Descriptions Can Lead to More Inclusive Hiring.” Talent Blog, LinkedIn, 21 Mar. 2022, https://www.linkedin.com/business/talent/blog/talent-acquisition/skills-first-hiring-pilot?trk=daily-blog-newsletter.