10, June, 2016
Having diversity breeds innovation and enriches an organization’s work culture. Companies across the world are becoming increasingly aware of this.
Firms are trying to create a more comfortable work atmosphere that accommodates employees of various religions, ethnicities, and backgrounds. They know that creating a diversity-friendly work environment will attract all kinds of people and ultimately boost the company’s growth.
However, sometimes employers ignore one key area when taking diversity initiatives –the hiring process. Without a well-planned hiring process aimed at recruiting a diverse workforce, it is difficult to find the right people for your firm.
Companies need to break the hiring process into 3 main parts and build diversity initiatives for each one:
If you are looking to improve the diversity in your workforce, you need to increase your organization’s visibility so that it shows up on everyone’s radar during the job search.
You will need a solid content team that includes the right keywords in your posts, ensuring that they reach your target audience (i.e. minority groups) and attracts people from diverse backgrounds.
Many of these candidates are not too confident when applying for jobs due to the fear of rejection. Therefore, it is important to word your advertisements the right way, and make your firm sound as welcoming as possible.
You could even ask employees currently employed with the company to refer people from their networks, and offer a referral bonus in case these candidates are hired.
Once you’ve devised the recruitment plan, it is time to consider the interview process. Your goal is to ensure that diverse applicants feel comfortable when they arrive for an interview.
For starters, make sure that the building where the interview is conducted can be accessed by people with wheelchairs or any disability. Many disabled applicants would be put off if they find it difficult to get to their interview venue.
Your interviewers should be highly-trained professionals who are capable of handling diverse applicants. They need to be sensitive to the social, physical, and economic conditions of each applicant, and must understand when to steer clear of certain topics.
Also, it is important to not oversell any position in your company. Speak to a diverse employee as you would to a “regular” applicant. Saying that your employees are extremely tolerant and that your workplace is quite accommodating for minorities or disabled people could cause a candidate to feel uncomfortable. They are looking for equal opportunity, not special treatment.
Ensure that your hiring team consists of people from diverse backgrounds, so that the hiring doesn’t favour any single community.
If anyone on your hiring team makes comments such as, “I don’t think they would be a good fit here”, you need to find out why they would feel that way. A candidate can’t be turned away due to a single employee’s personal vendetta. If you are planning to reject a candidate, you should be able to give them a solid reason why.
Without a legitimate reason, your candidate might think that they have been shunned due to their ethnicity, race, religion, or whatever else makes them diverse. They will be sure to let people know that your company isn’t very open to hiring diverse candidates, and you will miss out on a large pool of talent.
So, keep these points in mind when you are planning your next hire, and try a more diversity-friendly approach to the process. This way, you are sure to find candidates with varied backgrounds who will help you take your business to the next level.