With the gender-pay gap a key focus of many UK organisations, recruitment firm totaljobs.com has looked into how the language of a job ad could impact on diversity.
Using previous academic research from The University of Waterloo and Duke University which outlined a series of male and female gender-coded words, totaljobs.com analysed 76,929 job adverts over a six week period to assess the frequency of gender-coded words in UK recruitment.
Within these job adverts, they found 478,175 words which carry gender bias. This is an average of 6 male-coded or female-coded words per job advert.
The research shows that while that many industries are making real strides towards greater inclusivity, gender-coded words are rife within UK job adverts, and are serving to unintentionally uphold gender-stereotypes.
The wording of ads for senior level positions was more likely to be skewed towards male applicants. The City of London was the location most likely to use male biased language, with Manchester leading the way in the use of gender neutral language.
The aim of the study is to enable employers to receive more (and more relevant) applications for their vacancies, and with this in mind totaljobs have launched the , which will help employers to check job descriptions for any unconscious bias. To find out more, click here
It would be interesting to know to what extent the skewing of the vocabulary used in job ads correlates with salaries, both as advertised, and as actually offered.