What is diversity recruiting?
Diversity recruiting is the idea that your team should reflect the society that is around you and that your recruitment policies are free from biases for or against any individual or group of candidates. It is still based on meritocratic systems and structured to find the best candidates whilst excluding biases from the recruitment process.
Whilst many may think diversity is primarily related to multiculturalism, diversity recruitment is actually about creating a wide ranging workforce with attributes including; age, gender, race, sexual orientation, education, background, languages, abilities and so on.
Having a more diverse workforce isn’t however easy to create or easy to manage. As a practical application, diversity exists because of conflicting perspectives therefore a diverse workforce will have to deal with conflict in different ways.
Why is a diversity recruiting strategy important?
There are many associated benefits of diversity strategy in your organization, and through recruitment, you can build a wide range of candidates and employees who can bring these benefits to your organization as well. In order to benefit from these advantages, you would need to employ diversity recruiting strategies.
Diversity brings about a wide variety of diverse perspectives, but what that truly means is that diversity will show the different characteristics and backgrounds of each individual. From different experiences to wide ranging skills, a diverse workforce has many different access points to a wider variety of perspectives which is extremely beneficial when it comes to planning and executing a business strategy.
It has been shown countless times that a diverse workforce is more creative. The different perspectives that are brought together in an environment will bring fresh, new ideas and in return, improve the creativity of your workforce.
Improved decision making
Researchers have found that when diverse teams made a business decision, they outperformed individual decision makers up to 87% of the time.
Again, the more we can create a diverse workforce that focuses on talents, skills and abilities, the more positive impact that it will have on productivity.
Reduced employee churn
A more diverse workforce is generally more inclusive of different individual characteristics and perspectives. This leads to greater inclusion which means that employees feel more accepted and valued. The more diverse the workplace, the lower the turnover rates.
Higher employee engagement
As with reduced turnover, the principals of engagement remain very similar. With more people having the shared knowledge and experiences of feeling like they may not traditionally fit into the workplace, the more diverse the teams, the less that this is an issue.
Diversity recruiting strategies
A diversity recruiting strategy should define the goals of recruitment and will often be part of an overall diversity and inclusion policy. Recruitment is just part of making the cultural changes happen in the workplace. Your D&I policy should reflect questions about what the recruitment process is going to look like and how you will achieve diversity and inclusion in your strategies.
The second most important part of the diversity recruiting strategy is identifying who is accountable for the results. Is it going to be HR? Is it going to be department heads? Is it going to be the board of directors? Usually, the task sits in HR but it is then shared across departments to highlight processes and procedures of this recruitment style.
Finally, your diversity recruitment strategy should set out how the results of this strategy will be assessed and measured.
These are just some of the various strategies that are used to develop a diversity recruiting strategy.
Psychometric testing in the recruitment process
Psychometric testing is often made up of an activity or assessment, given to potential candidates to assess their skills, abilities and knowledge in specific areas of competence. They can also be used to gain an understanding of a candidate’s personality, making it easier for you to identify individuals who will fit not only your job description, but your company culture and work patterns.
Target diverse candidates
Instead of targeting candidates from just one source, i.e. web recruiting platform, reach out to different platforms to get a wider selection of candidates. Something as simple as a job posting on social media like LinkedIn or even Instagram can provide a wider sample alongside web recruitment than you may realize.You need to identify the relevant channels through which to reach diverse audiences with vacancy advertisements.
Encourage referrals from existing staff
A candidate referral program is something that you will have either heard of or experienced. But for diverse groups it may not occur to them that they can recommend friends or people that they know with similar backgrounds and experiences to put in an application.The current workforce can be a good lightning rod of getting new job postings out to the wider community and for that specific demographic as well.
Develop and promote the organization’s diversity credentials
Undergoing some brand development in recruitment is a good way to showcase your D&I recruitment vision. Discuss the benefits and importance of diversity with your team, get their buy in and engrain those values into your company culture. Being an organization which can show that it values differences, people and opinions from all walks of life will help it to become recognized as a diverse employer.
Establish diversity and inclusivity policies
You need to live daily values when it comes to recruiting diverse candidates and not just say you do. This is why it has become so important to implement company policies that appeal to diverse candidates.Things like understanding religious holidays, encouraging flexible working hours so that candidates can see an upside in still continuing to support their communities whilst also working means that you become instantly more appealing to a wider group of people.
Introduce diversity targets
One way to increase diversity is to set diversity targets, this could be as a percentage of the total number of the staff or a number that has been carefully thought of and considered across the board. Whilst this may be appealing to some, the practice can be disapproved by others. Manage the process correctly and show that there has been no bias in selecting candidates and this mechanism could be beneficial to the business as a whole.
Avoid unconscious bias
We are all naturally biased when it comes to a myriad of things. The music we listen to, the people we hang out with, the things we decide to purchase over another and so on. Unconscious bias dictates the way we behave most of the time, and in a diversity and inclusion recruitment strategy, we want to minimize its impact as much as we can. One of the measures that can be taken is unconscious bias training for all involved in the recruitment process.
Ensure consistent interview procedures
Whenever you standardize something you are making it easier to compare and contrast. Well in interviewing for diverse candidates, you want to be able to do the same and one of the best ways to do so is by using the same questions and the same interview procedures for all candidates. This helps to mitigate the risk of unconscious bias and give you a better benchmark to compare candidates against.
Offer remote and flexible working opportunities
As already touched upon, being able to offer solutions which help to increase or widen the diversity of candidates is going to be essential. Remote and flexible working opportunities are just one of the key elements of being able to reach out to a wider range of people. For those who have commitments like children or looking after a relative with sickness, being able to offer flexible and remote working opportunities will appeal to their needs as well as that of the business.
Provide valuable training opportunities
One of the best ways to retain your staff is to provide them with training opportunities, but did you also know that staff who have benefited from employer-provided training tend to be more loyal to their employer?Also, by providing training it means that people who don’t immediately have the necessary skills for a role might apply because they know that they can upskill in the role.