Anonymous CVs will not be compulsory

Plan abandoned after pilot scheme reveals anonymous CVs do not help candidates from foreign or poorer backgrounds

17 August 2011

A PLAN to make anonymous CVs compulsory at all large French companies has been abandoned - five years after it became law and was never implemented.

The government had looked at the possibility of rolling anonymous CVs out to all firms with more than 50 employees, following an experiment last year.

It would have seen job applicants no longer revealing their name, age, sex or nationality on their CV.

However, the State's diversity and equality commissioner, Yazid Sabeg, said he had changed his mind on the initiative and it should remain optional.

A pilot scheme was launched at 50 major firms in seven departments, including La Poste, Axa, Coca Cola, BNP Paribas and Eurodisney.

The results were assessed by Pôle Emploi which found that, in some cases, anonymous CVs were counter-productive.

Researchers found that people of foreign origin and those who live in underprivileged areas are less likely to be invited to an interview if their CV contains no name or address.

The researchers said the results may be because recruiters make allowances for poor presentation or faults in French if they see a foreign name, while if the person is from a deprived area they may assume this explains poor qualifications or lack of experience.

Firms may also tend towards "positive" discrimination, which is not possible if they know nothing about the candidate's origins.

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