Hello yes, I started putting some notes together for a follow-up blog post on the non-binary stuffs, but I won’t be posting it any time soon because I have more research to do, but here’s what I have so far if it’s useful to anyone. Idk how much an information dump like this is actually useful in a forum discussion but ima do it anyway -makes priest sounds from AoEII-
Couple of practical notes about hiring for gender diversity, mostly re non-binary and trans humans but also general notes at the bottom
Preferred names and pronouns
If you want people to feel safe telling you that they have a preferred name (different to the legal one you will need for tax or whatever) and a pronoun preference then make it a normal part of your application/hiring/onboarding process. Don’t just assume that they will feel safe enough to reach out and tell you in a thread of emails or private message or phone call. By asking for this in your normal forms you send everyone, you make the person feel included and thus better able to bring their real selves - and if they feel safe in the application stage they are tots gunna be able to bring their best selves to the interview!
If you have an application form, make sure it’s clear that people can use their preferred name on the application if they have one. As a more experienced non-binary human, I would do this anyway but when I got my first tech job I used my legal name on my cv and application, and jeez did that come back to bite me. It just wasn’t clear that I could as a new human in tech/real-job-world, just put my preferred name in there. xD “What should we call you?” or something.
When you send out the interview info (building address, time etc), it’s somewhat normalised now to tell the applicant that they should contact you if they need any special provisions to be made. You could add a similar bit to just say that they can contact you if they have particular name/pronouns etc they want you to use. tbh if I saw that I’d probably be like “heck yeah I love these people, I’m gunna work for this company forevers” before even starting the interview xD
IF SOMEONE GIVES YOU PREFERRED NAME/PRONOUNS, USE THEM. This might seem obvious, but when you have someone turn up called David (he/him preference) and they have traditionally feminine features/voice/etc, you’ve been told. You may find yourself wanting to default to she/her without noticing. That’s on you as an interviewer to make sure you can keep that human safe.
Note on neurodiversity and interviews:
Some people will super appreciate knowing what the interview will entail before beginning because they find it really difficult to prepare for interviews cos everyone asks different things and expect you to have stories for everything you can just pop out of the air under pressure like magic or smth. If you have a particular format you follow, eg “we will ask you about your experience with this thing, and then we will ask for examples of x and y and z.” you might as well tell them about it plenty ahead of time. Also in a multi-stage format where lots of interviews will be held, hopefully you’re already making it clear what applicants should expect from each (I have heard plenty of friends say “urggh I thought we were gunna be talking about the tech task but apparently that’s the next interview and so I wasn’t prepped at all for answering questions on this other thing”, so I know not everyone is doing this!)
However if you do give the information, be prepared to follow up on what you said you’d do, unless the interviewee takes you in a different direction. Can’t imagine what it’d be like for these peeps if they were to prepare for what you told them you’d ask and then you ask something different completely. I don’t know super lots about this topic, it’s something that has come out of conversations with two people who do find that useful tho.
I mean like HR forms, once you know the person will be hired. Idk what you call them.
Something my current workplace did, which I super appreciated, was have separate boxes for Legal Name and Preferred Name on their new start forms. Just like… in the normal forms, without having to ask or anything, so I’m not treated any differently to everyone else but the process is still inclusive you know? It was something along these lines:
(this is the name on your id, birth certificate etc, and will be used for the following purposes: tax/HMRC; whatever else. It will be visible in the following places: internal HR system, and no one will see it apart from those who need it to do their jobs)
(this is the name you would like people to call you and know you as, and will be used for the following purposes: email address; account names on internal/external services. It will be visible in the following places: email info; slack; everywhere; just everywhere it possibly can be used)
^ note that it was super clear how both names would be used!
Also add a lil box for preferred pronouns.
If someone has no preferred name or pronoun, they don’t have to fill out those boxes! Ez pz no one loses
Other areas of consideration I only have bare notes on:
easy win is to add a statement to your standard job headers/footers (the bit about company culture or whatever that goes on all your job ads. You might not have one. If so, make it a new norm to add a lil thing on the end of every job ad for this I guess?) that states you’re super cool humans who love people from all walks of life. This takes very little effort, but so long as you follow up and actually love people from all walks of life, then it can make a small difference to people scrolling through job ads. If you put it in and then treat your people like poop then it will be quickly seen through with glassdoor reviews etc.
training. There are plenty of companies out there providing D&I training for HR or for whole companies. They’re not going to be perfect, and you shouldn’t just listen to them and then never try to improve again because the ‘experts’ told you this much was fine. But in terms of quickly making sure that everyone who interviews knows how to behave inclusively, and to increase awareness of biases, then popping them all on a three day training course is easier than expecting everyone to go and research how to be better individually and accidentally perpetuating their own unconscious biases during that research… I think there are great arguments against some of these courses too though.
consider ‘positive bias’. Idk what term to use but I’ve put that in quotes cos I don’t like that one. Go out of your way to look for the diversity you want in the company, instead of talking about how hard it is because no one from X minority applies. (also go watch Ash Coleman’s talk from TestBash Brighton 2019 if you wanna know why ‘positive bias’ is actually ‘bias correction’, and also learn so much in general)
consider redaction. If you are taking baby steps and getting a lot of resistance to ‘positive bias’, a half step helping to remove unconscious bias from the cv-checking-who-to-come-in-for-interviews step could be to redact certain types of info from applications. Eg name, gender, age, any dates of education (if they did their degree in 1980 then the Person Chooser will know the applicant is prolly in their 60s
hire juniors! Like omg just do it. Hire juniors, give them the experience you want them to have and stop saying silly things like “we want to have more X-minority people in the company but we’re hiring for Y specific skills and there aren’t many X-minority people in that area” GREAT NOW YOU ARE IN AN AMAZING POSITION TO HELP MORE X-MINORITY PEOPLE GET INTO THAT AREA WOOOO congrats applause applause. (but also there are usually plenty of people of that minority in that specialism/area, but you just don’t know where to find them)((I don’t know how to find people either, other than you know, having good wide network and links, going out and finding communities n stuff because you are part of the world))