Building & maintaining a diverse workforce has a myriad of benefits. For starters, it shows that you have an inclusive and open company culture that doesn’t support prejudices or bias. Secondly, diversity will improve creativity & innovation within your company.
Hiring people from different walks of life and ethnic backgrounds creates an environment where unique experiences are considered a strength in the workforce, not a weakness. This inclusive environment ultimately translates to a better and bigger pool of knowledge to utilize.
If you’ve already taken steps to create a diverse workplace, kudos! However, every company can make improvements when it comes to diversity and supporting an inclusive culture in their workforce.
The best way to get started is through purposeful recruitment. It’s essential that your recruiters have a growth mindset & are searching for potential candidates in diverse pools. If not, your business is in danger of missing out on fresh, untapped talent!
What is Workplace Diversity
Workplace Diversity is an ideal work environment in which people from differing backgrounds can collaborate, innovate & feel free to be their authentic selves. It’s more than a concept, & has clearly been proven to produce better results than a homogenous workforce. Businesses therefore are encouraged to move forward into today’s best practices for recruitment by checking both their unconscious and conscious bias. Often the common biases are gender, or race. These are inarguably significant when looking at diversity, but they don’t encompass the entire problem.
Inherent diversity often includes demographic characteristics like race, sex, and age. However, acquired diversity, on the other hand, include factors such as education, experience, values, knowledge, and skills.
Are There Really Benefits to Having Diversity?
As stated before, it’s been proven! Forbes has concluded that a diverse workspace directly correlates to internal innovation and business growth. Not only that, but there is statistical proof to back up this claim. A study of more than 500 companies and organizations concluded that every 1% addition to racial and gender diversity meant a 3% to 9% increase in sales revenue.
These results are no surprise. Having a diverse set of people from various backgrounds in your organization means you’ve got more experiences to call upon, people who are accustomed to different situations, have unique skills and can provide fresh ideas.
How Can You Increase Diversity?
To increase diversity, you need to look differently, not harder.
First, you need to start searching for diverse talent in diverse places. Look into communities that are virtually untapped instead of going to the same old job fairs or university campuses.
Second, craft your job posting strategically.
Avoid using strong, dominearing words, and try to keep the post as neutral as possible. On the same note, you should ensure your policies are inclusive & equitable. For example, ask yourself: does our dress-code policy marginalize a specific group of people? If the answer is yes, consider what that could mean for your workplace environment.
Third, it’s beneficial to examine your working policy to determine what can and can’t be adjusted. For example, most people want to avoid a huge commute to work each day. Is it possible for them to work from home sometimes?
This is the sort of thing you can think about ahead of time & establish in your recruiting strategy. Having a more flexible working policy in place gives your employees a chance to implement the proper work-life balance, and therefore tends to be the most attractive attribute to a job posting.
Want to increase diversity in your workplace? Contact re:work for more information!
Kill The Unconscious Bias
Let’s be honest: we all have unconscious bias’ towards others, whether it be about race, gender, sexuality, etc. It might have been ingrained at a young age by a family member, or it’s just something that’s grown over time. Regardless of how it came to be, it can be a difficult thing to nail down.
You can check out our website for more information; we are not a recruiting agency, but we use a unique and tried approach to bring diversity to the tech industry. By empowering black and Latinx individuals, especially women of color, with the right education, resources & opportunities, re:work has been able to introduce companies to a diverse & work-ready set of employees.
Don’t forget that enrolling in an unconscious bias course can also help you in the future. Remember, if there are other people in your company other than yourself who are in charge of employment or recruitment, then they will also need the training to help ensure they make an unbiased hire.
In some cases, it might be worth rolling out this kind of training to your whole workforce. It can be a long process, but just try to bear in mind the overall positive impact it will have on your team. As they are sifting through applications or conducting an interview, they will have the tools they need to make an unbiased decision. They will be able to make a hiring decision based entirely on performance or resume content, not on any subconscious bias or personal preference. If you start implementing this strategy, you’ll find that diversity in your workplace will come naturally.
Use Tech For Success
Technology can really help you to build & support diversity in the workforce. Positive intentions aren’t enough to beat issues in the early stages of the recruitment process, and unconscious biases can get in the way with hiring both the best candidates and those from diverse backgrounds.
People who work in recruitment and talent departments need support from their organizations to implement a system and processes that have proven to be effective at increasing workplace diversity.
Technology can play a significant role by helping recruiters sift through resumes as they come in. It’s tedious and time-consuming, but technology can do it for you by scanning the document and picking out the keywords and qualifications which you’re looking for, without seeing anything else that may cause bias.
All you have to do is set up the software and look out for qualified candidates. If you wanted to look at it yourself, you could offer a blind resume application, where no personal details are on the resume to elicit any bias.
Lastly, consider using a blind interview, where you use technology, so you can’t see the person in question. The only thing heard will be their voice, which won’t disguise their gender, but it goes a long way in cutting out the unconscious bias.
Check out re:work’s program to improve diversity in your tech company
Depending on which industry you operate in, you’ll find different methods and what works for you. Implementing systems that effectively support diversity in the workplace can be tough, but is necessary and worth it. Continue to check your unconscious bias, practice looking differently by tapping into other communities, and adopt a growth mindset through continued learning.
If you pass these practices onto your workforce, you’ll be well on your way to being a more inclusive and a more successful team. With the technology out there to help you, there’s no excuse.
Modern companies are rightfully making this a priority, so if you want to stay competitive and acquire some of the best workers out there, you need to pursue diversity through recruitment in a consistent way.