Job Recruiting Sites May Promote Employment Discrimination

February 13th, 2020

Employment discrimination may be illegal in the United States; however, experts say popular online job sites with artificial intelligence-augmented algorithms exhibited tremendous examples of gender, disability, race, and other types of bias. In fact, the issue has gotten so much press recently that hiring companies are seeking ways to prevent machines from learning how to mimic discriminatory hiring practices that have consistently and dramatically affected minority populations.

How AI Screening Can Lead to Discrimination

Software featuring AI has its benefits, particularly when employment teams sift through hundreds of resumes and cover letters. By its very nature, it learns from past data so it can move as efficiently as possible from document to document. The more data it receives, the more it begins to develop patterns about prime candidates for any position. Yet, its very nature can be problematic when the input it receives contains discriminatory overtones.

Amazon’s own hiring software is a prime example of discrimination by computer. Although Amazon attempted to make its candidate-job matching software colorblind, the software was fed data based on past discriminatory practices. Namely, when the software learned that certain jobs had been previously held mostly by men, the software began to exclude female applicants on the assumption that they were not preferred. While this type of discrimination is not intentional, it still has a widespread effect on people trying to rise in their careers. To its credit, Amazon revised its approach to recruiting new talent to reduce bias and rely less on algorithms.

Avoiding Employment Discrimination in a Virtual World

As more examples of bias on the most-used job sites come to the forefront, experts everywhere are debating how to eliminate the problem of discrimination. Nevertheless, many of the solutions seem to exacerbate the underlying cause; for instance, video screening software set out to analyze candidate’s responses and behaviors. Unfortunately, it could not adjust for candidates who exhibited physical or verbal disabilities, which caused them to be removed from consideration.

In a face-to-face job interview setting, such an egregious act of bias could lead to a lawsuit. It might even be so obvious that a third party could immediately recognize it and provide witness. On the internet, few candidates realize that they are being unethically and illegally taken out of contention for an unacceptable reason.

Recourse for Job Seekers Who Are Victims of Algorithm Bias

Proving any case of employment discrimination can be challenging. In some cases, the issue may not rest with the hiring company itself, but with the conduit site that tries to hook up talent and employers. For this reason, many victims of hiring bias immediately seek the help of highly trained lawyers with a track record of fighting for clients in similar situations. Attorneys well-versed in employment discrimination law can provide excellent counsel and help navigate the new world of bias by machine learning rather than human interviewer.

Philadelphia Employment Discrimination Lawyers at Sidney L. Gold & Associates, P.C. Advocate for Victims of Job Hiring Bias

If you believe you are the victim of illegal hiring bias, talk to the Philadelphia employment discrimination lawyers at Sidney L. Gold & Associates, P.C. We will review your case and fight for the justice you deserve. Call us at 215-569-1999 or contact us online to set up a free consultation. Located in Philadelphia and Pennsauken, New Jersey, we serve clients throughout Wilkes-Barre, Scranton, northeast Philadelphia, Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Montgomery County, and South Jersey.

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