Gov’t will adopt ‘blind’ hiring

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Gov’t will adopt ‘blind’ hiring

President Moon Jae-in on Thursday ordered the government to adopt a so-called blind hiring system for government and public institution employees starting in the second half of this year.

In a blind hiring system, the academic backgrounds, age of the applicants, addresses and even photos are excluded from the resume.

Additionally the government has set a 30 percent quota in hiring locals where public institutions’ headquarters are located.

The move is to provide equal opportunities while aiming at balanced national growth.

“When hiring government employees or at public institutions, I hope a blind hiring system is applied in the second half of this year,” President Moon said during a meeting with top Blue House aides. “By not allowing any discriminatory factors [on the resume] we give equal opportunities whether that person went to the top universities or general universities or those that went to school in Seoul or in other regions.”

President Moon said he hopes that everyone is given an equal opportunity where they are judged not on their backgrounds but on their competence.

“Although we can’t force the private sector [to do the same] before it is legalized,” Moon said.

“There has been proof from past precedence where conglomerates that hired through the ‘blind’ system were able to recruit talent with better skills and passion.”

Blue House spokesman Park Soo-hyun said the blind system is targeted at rooting out biases over where the applicant was raised, family connections and school ties.

The president also set a 30 percent quota of employees hired in the public sector to be applicants who live in the region where the government or public institution’s headquarters are located.

“The public institutions whose headquarters have been relocated to other regions as part of the innovative city project have to at least hire more than 30 percent of talent from the region,” Moon said. “When we first started on the innovative city project, one of the policies was to hire talent from that local region,” the president added. “But it is inconsistent with some hiring more than 20 percent and some doesn’t even reach 10 percent.”

He said when hiring only from the local region will the true national balanced growth, which could help find new growth engines, be achieved.

Improving equal opportunities in hiring was one of the key promises the president made as part of his larger goal in securing quality jobs for young people, including a 11 trillion won ($9.6 billion) supplementary budget to be used for public sector jobs.

Since the government’s announcement, the number of people preparing for public servant exams has grown significantly with some people even quitting their current jobs.

Meanwhile, the Presidential Committee on Job Creation was launched Wednesday and in its first meeting asked the labor union to wait for a year before the policies reflect the requests.


BY LEE HO-JEONG [lee.hojeong@joongang.co.kr]

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