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21 Shocking Facts About Gender in the Job Search (Infographic)

The issue of diversity hiring and the affect of unconscious bias on our recruiting practices, has become in increasingly hot topic in the recruitment industry over the past number of weeks. While it’s generally agreed that a lot has been done in recent years to create gender equality in the workplace, there is still a long way to go before true equality is actually achieved.

As a result, a number of different thought leaders and industry influencers have been trying to do their bit to work out ways we, as recruiters, can help tackle the issue. We even added our thoughts and advice into the mix with the help of Claire Mulligan, in one of our latest blog posts entitled; “How Badly is Your Unconscious Bias Affecting Your Recruiting Skills?

And to help shed some further light on the topic, we decided to share this excellent (but shocking) infographic from MedReps which suggests 21 different ways that gender impacts how individuals play the job search game and how employers/recruiters tend to respond to male and female applicants.

So please read, and please share because, as an industry, we need to constantly educate ourselves about the issue in order to devise processes to tackle it successfully:

gender equality


Top Takeaways for Recruiters:

Job Applications:

  • Men are more likely to apply for any role that takes their interest, even if they only meet 60% of the requirements.
  • Women are more selective and will only apply for jobs that they think suit their skills and personality and fit 100% of the requirements for.
  • Men are not influenced by the use of masculine and feminine traits in the job description, however women are commonly deterred by typically masculine terms such as ‘assertive’, ‘independent’ or ‘aggressive’. They are much more likely to respond to terms such as ‘dedicated’ or ‘responsible’.
  • Therefore, recruiters should be careful about how they word their job descriptions to avoid any gender bias. To check whether your job description has more of a leaning towards masculine or feminine traits, paste it into the GenderDecoder for Job Ads. It’s free and it will tell you your job ad is feminine-coded (i.e. if your job is written with more of a leaning towards a female candidate), masculine-coded (i.e. if your job is written with more of a leaning towards a male candidate) or neutral (i.e. if your job has no leaning towards male or female candidates), based on the language you’ve used to construct it.

Job Interviews:

  • Before knowing anything about the candidate’s skills or experience, employers expect male candidates to perform better than women.
  • Based on appearance alone, employers are twice as likely to hire a man than a woman.
  • Women who describe themselves in feminine terms such as ‘warm’ or ‘supportive’ are less likely to be considered for a job in a male dominated field, than if they were to use masculine terms such as ‘assertive.’
  • To create equal opportunities recruiters should assess candidates on a combination or hard and soft skills.

Salary Negotiation:

  • Women often still earn less than men in the same role.
  • To avoid this occurring, employers should place all employees on a pay-scale based on job level, experience, education and skills; not gender.


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