Olivier Vidal: Fair Hiring, Diversity & Inclusion

In this episode I’m speaking with Olivier Vidal, Olivier runs the Fair Hiring Project, he is a veteran of the recruitment industry and describes himself as an Entrepreneurial Socialist. Olivier and I met a number of months back as part of his attempts to have “a meaningful impact on the inclusion of diversity in corporate hiring & talent management”. Olivier has a very interesting perspective on recruitment as a discipline, he’s clearly thought long and hard about his field and I found that he has a very meta level approach.

In todays show we discuss several things including:

  • The universal skills that transcend Diversity & Inclusion challenges
  • The market failure that places “outsiders” at a disadvantage
  • The problem with the common advice recruiters give to job candidates and much, much more

Here’s some of the wisdom that Olivier shared:

The system suits insiders

Olivier explains how recruitment managers often fail to look beyond their personal preferences when selecting candidates for a role. Olivier describes how bias may play it’s part but the processes intended to attract candidates into an organisation are part of a system that does not include everyone:

“People tended to lean back on their social preferences, and that wasn’t necessarily bias on their part, it was the fact that the system suited the insider”

Employee Resource Groups should develop “hard skills”

Olivier suggests that there are some skills that he believes transcends diversity and inclusion challenges and employee resource groups can be used to develop these skills in their members:

“If those resource groups focused on less networking, and more hard skills, I think it would be a good thing”

People Need the Right Tools to develop

Olivier explains how employing the right tools are important for ensuring success for people within the workplace. In particular Olivier highlights the importance of an appropriate methodology for teaching people complex skills:

“You can teach people, really really complicated skills, if you apply the right methodology”


If you want a quick snapshot of what the episode is about, I’ve created some slides that you may find interesting


Employee resource groups should consider how they can develop the practical skills of their members

Show notes

Here are some selected links to for the resources and reports I discuss in the episode.

The Fair Hiring Project

An Introduction to the Fair Hiring Project

Olivier Vidal’s on Linkedin

Olivier Vidal on Twitter

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Charlotte Sweeney

Robert Walters: Diversity & Inclusion in Recruitment White Paper

Dan Pink

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