UK employers admit to selecting candidates based on their looks rather than their skills and experience, new research reveals.
A survey of 2,266 UK employers conducted by employment law firm, Peninsula, found that 88% of respondents who conduct interviews had at some stage, given the job to the most attractive candidate.
And a similar number of respondents (92%) said that appearance could influence their decision on who gets the job.
David Price, head of diversity at Peninsula said he was surprised at the number of people who have based an employment decision on looks, adding that it was rapidly turning into a new form of modern discrimination.
“Using such a strategy is not without legal risk,” Price warned. “Most employers know better than to base employment decisions on appearance that is related to legally protected factors such as race, age or disability, but it seems occasionally these factors are abandoned.
“The decision should be based on qualifications and experience. I can understand that employers want to choose candidates that fit in well within the company, but recruiting an individual on looks alone is clearly not acceptable,” he said.