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The Alternative Board Blog

Boosting Diversity in Your Recruitment Efforts

Jun. 16, 2020 | Posted by The Alternative Board
Diverse-Workplace

As businesses slowly begin to reopen, there is likely to be a fresh demand for new hires. But rather than go through traditional employee recruitment practices, many businesses now seek to expand the range of diversity within their workforces.

While some companies have known this all along, more are discovering that, as Forbes notes, “Not only is it the right thing to do, but there are several added benefits that diverse companies have over their counterparts.” Among these are the capacity “to perform better because they are able to understand different perspectives, tap into different markets and make better decisions that accurately reflect the society we live in.”

Diversity recruiting involves choosing qualified candidates through a process that harbors no bias—conscious or otherwise—towards any individual candidate or group of candidates. Here are suggestions on how you can redesign your past recruitment practices to make better, and more inclusive, decisions about future new hires.

Enact policies designed to attract diverse applicants.

Are your current workplace policies sufficient to interest a diverse range of candidate applications? Re-examine policies prohibiting discrimination and other workplace standards to determine if they are, in fact, achieving your goal of an open and inclusive environment.

What about recognizing cultural or religious holidays that have previously gone unnoticed? Or promoting flexible schedules so employees can devote some of their energies to building up their communities?

Examine your job postings.

The language used in some job postings may inadvertently limit the range of potential job applicants. Look for ways to “be more inclusive in your language to appeal to candidates from different backgrounds,” advises Recruitee. Do more to inform your target candidates “that you’re seeking them out, and explain why your company would make a great fit.”

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Invite employees to make more referrals.

We have written previously about the value of incentivizing employees to refer potential candidates to your organization. Talk to members of your workforce with more diverse backgrounds and encourage them to spread the word about job openings within their professional networks. It’s another way to get the word out to a more diverse range of job applicants.

Broaden involvement in the hiring process.

Traditionally, recruitment and hiring falls within the province of a company’s human resources program. But in these extraordinary times, it may be necessary to broaden involvement beyond this department and enlist the help of other departments.

Seek out ways to bring more diverse employees into the mix. Invite employees to take part in the hiring process and listen to their ideas about how to refine that process to become more inclusive. Involving more people and departments in hiring activities can reduce unconscious bias among those already in charge.

“When hiring feels like a group decision, you’re more likely to get an individual who doesn’t fit a particular mold,” notes Harver, a pre-employment assessment platform.

Explore more expanded internship opportunities.

If you are drawing upon the resources of interns, it may be time to think about where those interns come from. If your intern-recruitment efforts are centered around an elite university, for example, you may be unconsciously limiting the range of diverse applications.

Contact local community development organizations and similar groups and let them know your business regularly brings on interns with future employment opportunities. If they don’t know about potential internship candidates, they will likely be able to steer you towards organizations and educational institutions that can help.

Diversity and inclusivity are becoming more urgent in today’s rapidly evolving workplace. Learn more about strengthening your culture by downloading our complimentary TAB Whitepaper, “Easy Ways to Improve Your Company Culture.”

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Written by The Alternative Board