In today’s world, many HR teams will be working towards having a diverse workplace, but you can’t have diversity without inclusion, much like you can’t have strawberries without cream or Ant without Dec.
For HR teams, creating an atmosphere that welcomes all individuals and encourages equal engagement and representation is necessary to build a diverse team and a modern and enjoyable workplace culture.
In recent years there has been a real drive in the UK to push for equality, to the point that employers are setting quotas around gender, BAME, disability, and even sexuality.
In the workplace of today, there are two main categories of diversity:
- Inherent diversity that focuses on characteristics like race, sex, and age.
- Acquired diversity that focuses on education, experience, values, skills, and knowledge.
In this blog, Natural HR has set out to explore our top tips for successfully making a diverse and inclusive recruitment process a standard part of your people talent strategy.
What is the definition of workplace diversity?
It’s important to remember that workplace diversity is defined as when a business is understanding, accepting and valuing differences between people of different races, ethnicities, genders, ages, religions, disabilities, and sexual orientations, as well as differences in personalities, skill sets, experiences, and knowledge.
What are the benefits of diversity and inclusivity recruitment?
Within the workplace, having a functional diversity and inclusion process that’s integrated into your recruitment workflow will give your business several benefits, including:
- Hiring better talent.
- Being able to make more informed business decisions.
- Increasing the performance of your teams.
- Accelerating innovation by allowing different mindsets to collaborate.
- Gaining more decadent customer satisfaction due to high-quality staff.
- Improving company culture with improved employee satisfaction.
The inclusive hiring in the workplace checklist
Our guide below supports you through the entire recruitment process, from deciding to bring a new team member into the business to writing a job advert and interviewing shortlisted candidates, and will give you key points to ensure that diversity and inclusion are prioritised at each stage.
Audit your job adverts to remove bias:
You can’t look forward without looking backwards, which is true for inclusive and diverse recruitment. The first step you must do is to audit your entire recruitment workflow so that you can see where there are issues, thus allowing you to begin to make changes that will address diversity and inclusivity issues.
When you look back at old job adverts, you may notice a tendency to use more masculine or feminine language in job adverts, which could put off certain groups from applying for specific roles. From this review, you can then retrospectively apply new conditions to the recruitment workflow to minimise those biases in future recruitment drives.
Target sources where diverse candidates are focused:
With the power of the Internet, it’s now easier than ever before to source candidates from a vast talent pool, and to that end, a great way to diversify your recruitment pool is to source your candidates from a variety of different places.
Instead of simply relying on the standard job boards or recruitment agencies, seek out opportunities to diversify candidates through other potential sources such as educational institutes, government agencies and even rehabilitation centres.
You could also directly interact with groups that focus on specific areas; for a technology role, you could interact with women in technology groups to directly connect with potential female candidates.
Encourage your employees to utilise their network:
If you are looking to hire more of a specific group of under-represented people, reach out to some of the employees already on your team who are part of that demographic.
One way to do this is by creating an internal candidate referral program. You will be able to utilise your existing internal pool of diverse staff to connect with similar candidates from diverse backgrounds.
Offer internships targeted at underrepresented groups:
A great way to encourage up-and-coming talent in your industry is to offer internships to those in specific backgrounds. To accomplish this, you could establish working partnerships with education and community groups in your area to provide opportunities to groups that may struggle to make the first steps into the roles you’re recruiting for.
Develop an employer brand that showcases your diversity:
We’ve talked about the importance of brand identity before here at Natural HR. When building on it, don’t forget the importance of diversity and inclusivity. You should encourage your employees from diverse backgrounds to talk about their growth within your company, which you should then incorporate into your employer and recruitment branding.
Having these stories in place, and actively promoting them in your sourcing of candidates, is a great way to ensure your diversity recruiting strategy is running as it should be.
Utilise blind recruitment:
As we’ve discussed in recent weeks, blind recruitment is one of the hottest trends in recruitment and uses steps to blackout critical information, such as name, age, education and candidate photos, to reduce bias at the initial recruitment stage. The goal here is to remain free of discrimination regarding who you choose to interview further.
Rethink what factors you screen for when hiring:
When you look at what your ideal candidate looks like, a critical factor is ensuring that your potential candidates portray the traits that your company values. Throughout the recruitment process, take the time to look at how you’re screening candidates, and yourself, to see if you’re steering the results towards specific types of people due to potential bias you may hold.
Learn more with Natural HR’s on-demand Webinar
In November 2021, our HR Expert Webinar was hosted by Principal Diversity and Inclusion Consultant from Voice at The Table, Inge Woudstra, who showcased how HR teams can create an inclusive recruitment and promotion process that enables you to attract and develop the very best talent.
You can access this Webinar for free by selecting this link, where you’ll learn:
- The impact of bias in the workplace.
- How to use data to decide which areas to focus on in your employee’s life cycle.
- The impact of the new hybrid world on inclusion.
- Key principles, ideas, and quick wins to create a workplace where all talent can thrive.