The language in job adverts that deters female applicants

  13 June 2018    Read: 1151
The language in job adverts that deters female applicants

The way in which a job advert is worded could have a drastic impact on the number of male and female applicants who apply.

This is according to Textio, an augmented writing platform, which has carried out extensive research on the use of language in job applications.

The company has discovered that the inclusion of certain words in job descriptions that are regarded as being more masculine could lead to a decreased number of women putting themselves forward for positions.

On the other hand, vocabulary that is deemed as being more feminine can have the opposite effect.

In 2016, Textio carried out research that analysed how vocabulary can influence the gender of an individual that’s been hired by a company.

According to the findings, the average job post contains twice as many phrases that have a masculine-tone than feminine, which consequently results in more men applying for specific roles.

Words such as “exhaustive”, “enforcement” and “fearless” can prove more enticing to male applicants, while phrases such as “transparent”, “catalyst” and “in touch with” are seen as having a more feminine tone.

Australian software company Atlassian decided to put Textio’s software to the test by reworking the way in which it worded its job advertisements.

Over the course of a year, the company increased the number of women being hired for technical positions by 80 per cent.

Textio analysed more than 78,000 engineering jobs to determine how job listings with a more masculine tone can influence the amount of women who apply.

According to the findings from the research, job applications for positions in machine intelligence and back-end engineering were far less likely to attract female applicants due to the wording.

A recent study published in the journal Gender and Educationtook an in-depth look at the way in which society genders the teaching profession.

The research, conducted by a team from the University of Hertfordshire and the University of Hildesheim, concluded that the gender of the teacher doesn’t influence the way in which they enforce discipline in the classroom.

The researchers hope that their findings will help break down the stereotype that teaching is a predominantly “female” profession.


The Independent 

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