What is Diverse Recruiting?
Diversity in the workplace has become a top consideration for talent acquisition teams.
According to a recent survey by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), 57% of recruiters state that their recruitment process approaches are created to draw in candidates from a diverse range of backgrounds.
Diversity in the workplace should be prioritized for reasons other than compliance.
The increase in the focus on diversity is tied to how team-oriented and collaborative modern organizations have become. It’s been observed that businesses that can successfully hire and retain a diverse workforce have a distinct competitive advantage.
Increased workplace diversity is a goal for all recruiters and talent acquisition leaders. Why, then, do companies struggle with their diversity hiring goals? One reason is that they don’t have a diversity recruitment strategy.
What is a diversity recruiting strategy?
Many businesses erroneously believe that any program, including one promoting diversity, is solely about analytics. It’s not. Metrics are only one component of a larger plan.
Let’s use the example of wanting to complete a marathon. The objective (goal) is to finish the marathon. Your strategy is your training regimen. You don’t wake up one day, decide you’re going to run 26 miles, and then go for it…you’ve got to train your body for it. Training for a marathon requires time, effort, strategy, and a willingness to adapt.
Likewise, diversity recruiting strategies are how you first imagine and then carry on with developing a truly diverse workforce—one that is inviting and encourages a sense of belonging for every person who goes through the door.
But just because you have to run a bit further or train a little harder to get there doesn’t mean the race isn’t worthwhile. It depends on where you start. Any marathon runner will tell you that success has incomparable advantages and that training itself makes a difference.
The benefits of a diversity recruitment strategy
People like to work in environments where they feel at ease.
Job seekers are starting to look at the diversity of an employer’s leadership team and current staff more frequently as concerns about business culture, lack of workforce diversity, and harassment at work become more common.
It’s a candidate’s market right now. That implies that people–especially those with diverse backgrounds–won’t choose to work for you if they believe they won’t be welcomed.
Diversity should be a top priority for businesses because it is morally right to do so and because it directly benefits the bottom line.
Employees are free to be more imaginative, enthusiastic, and collaborative when they bring their true, authentic selves to work. Building trust and enabling people to learn from their coworkers are two benefits of diversifying the workforce.
Also, diverse businesses retain their employees better and are more likely to be recognized as industry leaders.
Since recruiters and hiring managers are at the forefront of your business’ talent acquisition strategy, it’s critical to ensure that they are adequately trained and aware of the value of diversity before they conduct interviews.
How can I improve my diversity recruiting strategy?
As more data is acquired, diversity hiring practices and policies should be continuously improved. It’s crucial to continue tracking the results of your activities and making adjustments as needed once you have decided on a strategy for how you will increase diversity as part of your larger recruitment goal.
Always ask yourself the following questions before making any changes:
- What are my goals?
- What does success look like?
- How will we measure our diversity recruiting efforts?
If you fail to quantify what you want to achieve, you’ll struggle to improve diversity in your workplace, and your diversity recruitment efforts will seem like a struggle.
What does success look like?
If you don’t measure your diversity recruiting efforts, you won’t know if they were effective. Setting specific goals and developing a plan to achieve them are crucial.
Choose your key performance indicators (KPIs) and keep a record of them routinely. Cross-reference them with metrics from other areas of recruitment to gain further understanding. You might discover, for instance, that employing diverse talent helps to improve employee engagement.
How to find diverse talent
Go wide in your searches to ensure that you find diverse candidates for your open roles. The following are some specific things you can add to your hiring process to find more diverse talent.:
1. Review your job postings
Do your job ads appeal to diverse candidates? Or, do they give potential diverse talent a reason to avoid applying?
It’s important to consider your choice of language in your job ads. Auditing your previous job postings and making revisions to appeal to a wider range of people is an easy strategy, to begin with. If you don’t have diverse candidates responding, this could be a hint to take a look at how you’re describing the role and the company.
Find ways to be more inclusive in your language if this is an issue with your ads so that you can attract diverse candidates.
2. Target sources where diverse candidates congregate
Choosing applicants from a variety of sources is a wonderful approach to guarantee that your talent pool is full of diverse individuals. If you want to recruit diverse candidates it’s important to avoid using the same sources repeatedly. A talent pool of similar applicants and a lack of workplace diversity can result from concentrating primarily on the sources that you are most familiar with.
Instead, look for chances to find diverse candidates where they frequently congregate. For instance, there are a lot of offline and online groups for women in technology. Instead of waiting for top-tier female candidates to discover you via websites like Indeed, this might be a terrific place to meet and engage with them. Your talent pools will be more diverse the more you take the initiative to identify these routes.
3. Encourage your diverse employees to refer their friends.
Members of your team most likely have networks of people with backgrounds akin to their own. An excellent way to strengthen your diversity recruitment strategy and demonstrate that your business supports individuals with unique perspectives is to establish a diverse candidate referral program.
Reach out to some of the team members who are already in the demographic you’re targeting. Give them the resources they need to help you sell the opportunity by encouraging them to share your job postings with their networks. Both your current and potential employees will feel appreciated by your business, which is great for general team morale and engagement.
4. Create a diversity-focused employer brand.
The greatest strategy to increase diversity in your applicant sourcing may be to naturally build an employer brand that values individuals and points of view from various backgrounds. With your team, discuss the advantages and significance of diversity, win their support, and integrate these ideals into your business culture.
5. Increase diversity in the screening process
If your diversity recruiting approach is attracting a decent range of candidates but you’re having trouble eliminating bias in how you screen them, you might want to take a look at some of these strategies.:
Recruiters often use the practice of “blacking out” all personal information from resumes to eliminate bias from candidate screening. Even if it’s not done intentionally, information like names, schools, dates of birth, certain places, and so on can lead to unconscious bias.
Reconsider the elements you screen for
This strategy is related to the audit of your job postings, where you reevaluated the qualities you seek in candidates and your communication style. One of the most important aspects of diversity recruiting is to constantly examine your own biases and ask yourself what qualities you value most in prospects and why.
Take the time to examine your testing and screening procedures for candidates, and sincerely consider whether you may be skewing the findings in favor of a particular demographic. If you are, think about modifying your testing procedures. If you’re unsure, consult some of your peers to gain a variety of viewpoints.
Get support from the C-Suite
Including leaders in your entire diversity and inclusion strategy is crucial. Your company’s leadership team must be dedicated to creating a more diverse workforce and they must grasp the importance of doing so for the benefit of the company.
You can help your diversity and inclusion efforts be successful by creating a solid diversity recruiting plan. Keep in mind that when it comes to diversity and inclusion, there is no “rush to the finish line.” The organization you build must care more about people and create a setting where everyone feels valued and motivated to perform at their best.
Diversity in the workforce cannot be achieved without altering the hiring process, which will inevitably alter the selection criteria for internal hires and promotions as well. It will probably require a lot of resources to change the way you recruit and keep employees, and there may even be resistance from your current workforce. You can handle these changes more easily if you have senior executives on board.
The only way to guarantee both time and financial resources is to have leadership support, which also positions your new plan for long-term success. This buy-in enables your team to possibly take bigger risks, such as altering how you recruit, the applicant pool you typically use, or adding DEIB specialists to your human resources department.
Underrepresented individuals should be well represented
Finally, when candidates see representation at all levels of the organization, people are more likely to stay. This is why it’s crucial to include when possible, diverse individuals on your interview panel. However, if it’s not a part of their regular duties, don’t ask the same person for every interview. Instead, have a roster of people who are willing and available to help when needed.