A Better Career Path for Mississippians

Mississippians, among millions of other Americans, are on a journey to find fulfillment in their work and advance their careers. As we reset our lives after a pandemic, we see employees continuing to leave their jobs well after we have returned to work (4.2 million in December 2021 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics). Some are leaving for higher pay, some are leaving for better opportunities, and many are leaving because they see an opportunity for greater impact elsewhere.

Everything about the way we work has changed, and the way we view work has, too. What began as job cuts and furloughs throughout industries worldwide has led to a personal quest for greater job fulfillment. And with nearly 1.5 jobs available for every American, the job of an employer extends far beyond finding qualified candidates. Today’s job seekers are looking for careers that offer purpose and flexibility with supportive managers, great culture, and a clear path for growth. To find the best candidates, organizations must rise to the challenge.

The Right Jobs for Mississippians

In January 2022, Mississippi’s unemployment rate reached a record low, dropping from 6.6% to 4.6% according to a recent State Employment and Unemployment report conducted by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is its lowest rate since 1976. Mississippians are taking advantage of the surplus of jobs today, and this means employers are experiencing more pressure to get it right.

Mississippi economist Corey Miller recently reported that personal income increased 7.4% in 2020, and today Mississippi continues to see increased personal income. With more jobs and higher income, the traditional method of hiring isn’t going to cut it for Mississippi’s workforce any more. It’s not only about salary alone, culture, or qualifications. It’s going to require a more sophisticated — and proven — method.

AccelerateMS Partnership

GoodJob and AccelerateMS have partnered to provide Mississippi employers with the tools they need to find lasting, fulfilling careers through an exclusive job marketplace. By starting with a short PATH Assessment®, candidates will be evaluated by their traits and behaviors organized in one of four modes: Purpose, Approach, Thinking, and Habits. The PATH Assessment results provide Mississippi employers using the AccelerateMS platform with the best candidates for the position.

AcclerateMS has a commitment to providing a world-class workforce in Mississippi to deliver sustained individual, community, and statewide economic prosperity. And GoodJob has a commitment to simplifying the hiring process by serving employers qualified job-seekers who have the right tools for the job.

Individuals interested in entering the AccelerateMS portal can take the PATH Assessment today at https://acceleratems.pathassessment.com/

Does AI Really Reduce Hiring Bias?

Biases in recruitment and hiring are a real problem.

In addition to being just plain unfair, hiring biases can ultimately impact a business’s bottom line. Research from McKinsey shows that companies with diverse workforces consistently perform better than those with homogeneous workforces. 

Although it’s not yet a perfect solution, artificial intelligence (AI) is proving to be a valuable tool for reducing bias in hiring. Here, we’ll take a look at how unconscious biases affect the hiring process, and the efficacy of AI in reducing hiring bias.

Is bias really a problem in hiring?

Yup. And you don’t have to look far for examples. 

In 2017, Palantir paid $1.7 million to settle a lawsuit from the U.S. Department of Labor, which accused Palantir of disproportionately turning down qualified Asian candidates who applied for certain engineering positions. 

Although Palantir disagreed with the allegations and denied knowingly discriminating, the numbers showed otherwise: For one software engineer job, Palantir hired 14 non-Asian engineers and 11 Asian engineers, even though 85% of the 1,160 applicants were Asian. 

The Palantir case is a prime example of unconscious bias in hiring, and it’s not an isolated incident. Research from the University of Toronto shows that candidates with Asian names are 28% less likely to get an interview than equally qualified candidates with Anglo-Canadian names.

In addition, a 2016 study found that people with resumes containing minority racial cues — such as a distinctively African-American or Asian name — received 30 to 50% fewer callbacks from employers than those who had equivalent resumes without racial cues. When these candidates “whitened” their resumes — concealing or downplaying racial cues — they were significantly more likely to receive a callback, even though their qualifications were unchanged. 

And it’s not just race that makes a difference. Other studies reveal biases against female and older candidates.

Can’t you just train hiring managers to be less biased?

Maybe, but hiring bias isn’t just a problem with people. Hiring processes can also prevent qualified candidates from getting hired. 

For example, candidates who were referred by current employees are more likely to be hired than non-referred candidates. But referrals often result in candidates who are very similar to those who referred them, effectively boxing out candidates who don’t already have an in at the company. 

The college-to-job pipeline has inherent bias as well: Overburdened hiring managers who don’t have time to sort through the pile of job applications often sort based on the college a candidate attended.

This results in preference for candidates who graduated from traditionally “elite” or “prestigious” colleges…which, of course, can have their own biases in admissions. Even worse, some companies recruit directly from elite universities, actively homogenizing their workforces. 

Can AI reduce hiring bias?

AI has the ability to reduce hiring bias, pushing the hiring and recruitment process into a more fair, more diverse future.

AI can be integrated into the hiring process in many ways. AI platforms can help sort resumes by desired qualifications while ignoring demographic data. Conversational AI can be used to collect additional information from candidates. AI tools can also streamline the day-to-day work of a hiring department, freeing up more time for fair consideration

Most promisingly, AI can be used to examine big data sets and identify common traits of successful candidates, giving hiring managers a more reliable heuristic than a candidate’s name, education, or even work history. 

But an AI tool is only as effective as the data that goes into it. If the creators of AI solutions aren’t careful, bias can sneak its way into AI-supported decisions.

Luckily, projects such as the Open AI Charter aim to limit implicit bias in AI. IBM Research, too, has produced a series of principles aimed specifically at mitigating bias in AI solutions. 

In other words, AI is not yet a silver bullet for eliminating bias in hiring, but we’re getting there.

Will hiring be more fair in the future? Can AI help? We believe the answer is yes — if companies know what’s good for them.

Find out how GoodJob’s AI can help your company reduce hiring bias. Contact us.

Job Fulfillment

How to Make More Money at Work

There are so many elements at play when it comes to finding a job that makes you feel happy and satisfied—things like office culture, work-life balance, work conditions, employee perks, and more. But these days, it often seems like you have to compromise that sense of purpose and satisfaction for higher pay.

Well, what if it didn’t have to be that way?

That’s why we’re sharing what we’ve learned along the way. When it comes to earning more money, job satisfaction is a critical factor in higher-paying jobs.

Unlocking Job Satisfaction

What is it that brings job satisfaction? Are they factors such as the one we mentioned above? Or does it depend more on aspects such as location, job security, or other elements we haven’t named?

Obviously, certain factors are more important to certain people. However, as proposed by Frederick Herzberg, a pioneer in motivation theory, there are two dimensions to job satisfaction: “hygiene” and motivation.” Hygiene may seem like an unusual term to use when describing motivation. In this case, it doesn’t refer to when you cube mate forgets to shower after the gym. Rather, hygiene issues in this case refer to salary and supervision, and these can decrease employee dissatisfaction with work. Motivators, such as recognition and achievement, make employees feel more productive and engaged. Herzberg theorized that once hygiene areas are addressed, motivators will promote job fulfillment.

This means that perhaps the most important factor in finding job satisfaction is believing that your work and tasks are important and meaningful. On top of that, employees want to have their good work acknowledged and feel that their loyalty and stellar performance will allow them to advance within the company, bringing them more pay along the way.

Finding the Right Seat for Yourself

As you might already know and have experienced, unlocking job satisfaction isn’t as simple as just committing to believing that your work is important and meaningful. Other components for this are ensuring that you’re in the right seat at the company given your experience, skills, needs, and goals. But, here at GoodJob, we know that the right fit is directly tied to something outside of the things hiring managers are typically looking for on a resume.

Unfortunately, employers still struggle with deploying the right talent where they’re most needed. A study found that 1 in 5 workers are in the wrong job, causing them to feel disengaged and unproductive in their roles. This lack of drive and fulfillment can bleed throughout an organization and affect the entire workforce.

And even if a company has hired the right person for a role, today’s ever-changing work environment inevitably creates a need for change or new skills. More and more companies are becoming increasingly open to moving employees to where their desires and strengths lie—so long as that employee is a good fit for the company. But what does that look like?

Personality Matters

When we say personality matters, we don’t mean that it’s important to be “nice” or “easy-going.” What we mean is that there are specific traits and behaviors in a person’s workplace personality that works with various jobs. These are the characteristics that truly matter when it comes to demonstrating commitment, connecting with management on a relational level, and showing that you’re a valuable part of the business, which all ultimately leads to more pay and long-term success at work.

So how do you identify these traits, then?

Most personality assessments test for the wrong things or use questionable logic to analyze responses and draw conclusions. But the PATH Assessment organizes employee traits and behaviors into four modes: purpose, approach thinking, and habits. Far from the average personality test, the PATH assessment leverages data science and artificial intelligence (AI) to match candidates for the traits most advantageous to specific roles.

Understand Yourself Better

Are you ready to uncover a sense of purpose in your full-time job while also advancing and earning higher pay? The PATH assessment will reveal who you are in the workplace—what drives you, how you interact with coworkers, how you problem solve, and how you take action.

Take the next step in identifying your dream job role by taking the PATH assessment today. Click here to learn more.