An HR training helped us realize that unconscious biases could affect our hiring process — and we wanted to find a way to address that.
Leveraging the learnings from our training, we quickly created a prototype to help us eliminate unconscious bias as a factor.
The result was Antibias, a Chrome extension that replaces LinkedIn profile photos and names with geometric patterns, removing any potential bias when reviewing job applicants. We shared it with the world in the hopes that it could have an impact outside our own office. Within two weeks, we saw hundreds of installs — and that was just the beginning.
As part of a global diversity and inclusion training initiative, Beyond needed to explore the reality of implicit bias. Participants in that training session were asked to use what they had learned to brainstorm tangible ways to reduce bias in their daily lives at work. One idea: avoiding LinkedIn profile photos and names early in the recruiting process might help. Since this wasn’t an option on LinkedIn, was there something we could do?
An hour later, someone on the team created a functional prototype of a Google Chrome extension that did the job. To test our new tool, we gave the Beyond recruiting team two weeks to put it through its paces, and conducted in-depth interviews to gather their feedback. Based on what we heard, we iterated new features and functionality to best support the recruiting experience.
While there’s still much work to be done to reduce workplace bias, we believe that our Antibias Chrome extension represents a small, significant step. Though we created it for ourselves, in the hopes of making a difference, we shared it on the Chrome web store. Within two weeks, the extension had over 1,800 pageviews and 200 installs, and word started to spread. Antibias received an Honorable Mention in the 2019 Fast Company World Changing Ideas Awards.