Why you need to diversify now
Diversity is good for business. Studies by Catalyst6 and Deloitte both show that that gender diversity leads to better financial performance. Another study from SmartRecruiters revealed that, “when properly managed and trained, diverse work teams [produce] results six-times higher than homogenous teams.” In other words, James Damore was wrong. Diversifying your workplace is guaranteed to foster better communication and increase profit margins.
Your company also needs to diversify because it’s the right thing to do. As countless studies have shown, biases based on ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, and disability are deeply ingrained. It is not enough to simply be “colorblind” as a hiring policy. To unlearn these biases and to ensure equality for all it is not enough to simply sit back and trust that the most qualified applicant will get the job. In order to truly level the playing field, recruiters must actively take measures to diversify. These measures span the entire hiring process and extend into office culture and managerial practices. It’s not enough to hire candidates from diverse backgrounds—it’s equally important to retain them.
Using recruitment marketing to diversifyAchieving diversity in the workplace starts with your recruitment strategy. There are numerous steps you can take to get more resumes from diverse candidates on your desk:
- Conduct outreach at community events and jobs fairs in diverse areas.
- Run advertisements in publications, radio stations, and websites frequented by non-native English speakers.
- Collaborate with outreach initiatives such as urban teach programs to spread awareness about your brand and educate communities at the same time.
- Run programming that highlights the success of diverse employees at your company on your blog or newsletter.
- Reduce tokenism. Studies show that when only one candidate for a given position is of diverse backgrounds, they stand out as a “token,” whereas if there are two or more, they are given more equal preference.
- In some cases, it can be best to remove name, gender, age, and address from resumes. Studies show that hiring managers implicitly rate male resumes as more competent even when there is a female candidate with comparable or even significantly greater experience.
All these measures are extremely cost effective, and guarantee more diverse candidates through through your doors.
Strategies to diversify
While outreach is definitely a critical aspect of achieving your diversity hiring goals, there’s a lot more to be done in terms of hiring and employee retention. You can start by looking inwards—what barriers might exist that are preventing you from having a more diverse workplace? What can you do to remove them?
It’s essential to train your hiring staff to understand exactly what different demographics you are looking for in a position and tailor questions to these candidates. Interviewers should be educated about microaggressions. They should not let their biases alienate potential candidates. This diversity training should not just be restricted to those in managerial positions. It should include anyone who might be involved in the interview process. Everyone should be given diversity sensitivity workshops because it will help with retention. Your goal is not just to recruit and hire diverse candidates—it’s to facilitate their success in your company in the long term. It can be helpful to track the progress of all hires within your company, so that you can quantify how diverse hires are growing within your organization.Hopefully, you can begin to understand how your company is empowering candidates of diverse backgrounds. If you conduct some internal review and your company isn’t up to par when it comes to diverse hires, don’t fret. As you face this problem head on, it is not enough to just focus on just one part of the hiring process. Meeting your diversity hiring goals requires a multifaceted plan of implementation that involves constant self-evaluation and education.