Technology not yet ready to assess ‘cultural fit’ among potential recruits

Employers should be cautious of technology which promises to assess whether a person will be a good ‘cultural fit’ for their firm, with algorithms, at best, not capable of reading complex human personalities and, at worst, inclined to replicate human biases. That is the warning from specialist recruiter, White Recruitment.

The insight comes following recent reports that data analytics are increasingly being harnessed to source prospective employees based on cultural fit, with software being utilised to detect ‘signs of cultural affinity’ in applicants.

Lewis Richards, Managing Director at White Recruitment, commented:

“While technology can certainly assist when assessing potential recruits for cultural fit – for example, through enabling video CVs and interviews – it is naïve to assume that machines alone are intelligent enough do decide who will gel best with an existing team.

“There is also a real risk that some algorithms may inadvertently replicate historic biases, or discount great applicants who may not be similar enough to existing employees. However, this means that firms may build workforces that get along nicely, but don’t benefit from the advantages that cognitive diversity brings, such as increased innovation.

“The old adage that opposites attract is often true, and bringing together people with differences in lifestyle, culture, political beliefs and thinking can often generate a spark that no machine could have predicted.

“WR search, our brand new retained model, has been carefully designed to empower businesses to hire for cultural fit, through providing cutting edge insight, behavioural assessments and comprehensive on-boarding.”