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Does Your Company Have a Diversity Hiring Plan?

Many companies today are committing to hiring a more diverse workforce, but it takes planning.

Review your company hiring policies and make changes that reflect home situations, cultural norms, and family structures—integrating inclusion, equity, and diversity elements into management, employee reviews, and professional development plans.

Which areas of your business need the most attention regarding diversity? According to the Diversity Recruiting Employer Benchmark Survey, some 70% of employers have specific hiring goals. For example, some commit to increasing females on staff in tech roles by 15%. Diversity in management and leadership are two of the ways a company can commit to diversity.

Women of color have recently endured a challenging period with job losses driven by the COVID-19 pandemic, even as employers have promised to improve diversity in light of calls for social justice. Employers must take a targeted approach to seek out this demographic. Only 54% of companies surveyed by Fairygodboss said they had “specific, tangible” diversity hiring goals for 2021.

According to the survey, women are 1.5 times more likely to make decisions based on racial equality or gender, and Black women are two times more likely to make decisions that way. Flexible work benefits can be a big draw, and job applicants do pay attention to branding.

Institutional bias is also an issue, one that is hard to shake. Women, for example, are half as likely as men to find a job on LinkedIn. Like resume bias, men are more likely than women to self-promote on their LinkedIn profiles.

Company leaders, not new talent, should lead the charge for diversity. One way to accomplish that is to set diversity standards for an interview lineup. Do not just interview one person from an under-represented group. Use your company data to determine where your company most underrepresents certain groups and prepare your lineup accordingly.

Is Your Hiring Team Diverse?

Once top management is on board, look at the hiring team. Is it diverse? Most job seekers say they are reluctant to take a position with a company unless they meet various employees during the interview process. Select a diverse committee and educate members on assessing potential candidates best. Include at least one diversity-related question in the interview.

Train that front-line team in how to perform complex searches on job boards and what to say when they post a job or talk to candidates. Recruiters and hiring managers must know how to say what they want. Talk in advance about diversity goals and what you hope to achieve.

Devise a Diversity Recruiting Strategy

Define your diversity goals, action items, accountabilities, and success measures to attract, assess, engage and hire diverse talent. Capitalize on the benefits that come from a range of perspectives, backgrounds, and experiences. Ensure your company reflects your customer base and the communities where you operate.

Draw correlations between your staff’s diversity and job satisfaction, innovation, impact, and business results.

These days, there are more job openings than applicants, so companies face the tightest labor market in nearly 50 years. And demographics are changing. Employers must step up their game to compete and win the best talent. That means having a diverse workforce to attract that talent.

Applicants want to bring their authentic selves into the workplace. A company that welcomes diversity commits to the shifting company processes, behaviors and policies. Applicants will know if a company’s diversity efforts are genuine.

Turning your workplace into one with rich diversity can be challenging. It requires measured actions in a recruitment strategy.

People are hearing about #MeToo, #BlackLivesMatter #SocialJustice, #PayEquity, and #Equality. They want to work for companies that are driving change beyond their own company’s walls.

Look at how your diversity recruiting efforts stack up to your competitors.

Determine how you can align diversity recruiting practices with business initiatives, priorities, and results.

Your Diversity Recruitment Goals

Define the top three to five things your company wants to accomplish with its diversity recruiting strategy and put them in writing. Those goals might include increasing diversity at every level of your organization and recognizing that diversity could impact your business results.

When setting your goals, consider which areas of your business on which to focus. For example, if you are hiring for a marketing position, consider which backgrounds, perspectives, and experiences your marketing team lack and build a candidate pool to reflect those needs.

One of the top ways to drive diversity is to include a message in company communications that you seek diversity in the workplace. Employees will help with recruiting.

Find data on company and job seeker expectations when it comes to diversity. This will help you better meet employee needs.

Recruit continuously. Maintain a resume file and contact information to reach back out to potential candidates from under-represented groups. Even at times when you have no openings, maintain professional networks and make a note of candidates from under-represented groups you may be able to hire later.

Diversifying your workforce is most certainly a challenge. It requires hard work, goal-setting, and a team effort. If you let your employees know your intentions and advertise for diversity, you can eventually reach your goals, and your company will be better for it.

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