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The Ultimate Guide to Diversity Recruiting

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Master the art of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion with these videos, templates, tips, and resources.

The Ultimate Guide to Diversity Recruiting Pierpoint International RPO 2021 Banner Image

 

In an attempt to create a more inclusive workplace, companies are leaning towards the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DE&I) strategy. Diversity recruiting is the next step in creating a more inclusive and diverse workplace. With only 8.1% of female leadership in the Fortune 500 companies, there has never been a more critical time to implement diversity in your company and your recruitment process.

 

Diversity recruiting is a hiring approach that is based purely on merit by ensuring minimal biases related to a candidate’s age, gender, race, religion, etc. It promotes a fair recruitment process where everyone gets an equal opportunity. However, diversity means more than just fair recruitment, it also leads to higher profits. According to a report on Diversity by McKinsey and Company, companies with more ethnically or culturally diverse boards are 43% more likely to experience higher profits.

 

Here, we will explore why diversity recruiting is important, its impact on modern workplaces, and how to take an initiative towards making your workplace more diverse and inclusive.

 

 

  • Diversity in Recruiting: Uncovering Inclusion

  • Diversity in Recruiting: How It Can Improve Your Company

  • Diversity in Recruiting: Eliminating Bias

  • How Analytics Support Diversity & Inclusion Recruiting

  • Tech Tools & AI for Diversity Recruiting (And Melting Walls of Bias)

  • Six Tips for Diversity Sourcing

  • Tech Talent: Changing The Diversity Paradigm (Plus, 6 Ways to Diversify Your Talent Pool)

  • How to Create an Inclusive (DE&I Compliant) High Volume Hiring Strategy

 

 


Diversity in Recruiting: Uncovering Inclusion

 

In this section, we will take on the issue of “covering” in the workplace, and how you can create an environment that allows people to feel free to be themselves.

 

What is covering? Covering involves downplaying or hiding aspects of your identity for fear that, if others know about those aspects, it might hurt your reputation in the company. Those who cover fear that they’ll lose promotional opportunities, that others won’t want to collaborate with them, and/or that they’ll lose credibility.

 

You may think immediately of the LBGTQ community, with their long history of being “in the closet,” but covering is an issue for people of all races, genders, and sexual orientations. For example, some women with children do not put pictures of those children on their desk, for fear that they won’t be taken seriously as professionals. A practicing Muslim may retreat to his car to pray, rather than face discrimination. A white male may not share that he went on a mission over the weekend for church, so the people don’t consider him a “fanatic.”

 

In fact, according to a 2013 study by Deloitte, 61% of American workers practice some sort of covering:

  • 83% of LGBTQ individuals

  • 79% of Blacks

  • 67% of women of color

  • 66% of women

  • 63% of Hispanics

  • 45% of straight white men

 

People also cover aspects of themselves such as ability, veteran status, appearance, political views, and others.

 

What problems does it present?

A big issue is mental health and well-being. Most of us are more reserved at work than with our friends and family, but when your professional self is significantly different from your personal self, it can cause anxiety and depression, and negatively impact your sense of self and of self-worth.

 

Another result is that it takes a good deal of psychological energy to maintain the cover, which takes that energy away from other productive pursuits. That is, covering can diminish creativity and productivity. When those who cover believe that their opportunities are limited, their employee engagement and commitment to the company suffer. Ironically, some employees work to cover the very identities that corporate diversity initiatives are trying to engage and include.

 

According to the Deloitte study, 53% of respondents believe that their company’s leaders consciously or unconsciously expect people to cover in order to conform. Almost as many — 48% — indicated that the company had a cultural expectation that employees should cover.

 

Freeing employees to be themselves

What can leaders do to help employees feel safe about being themselves?

 

  • Engage the conversation. As important as diversity is, many employees assume that company diversity initiatives apply to someone else. However, because almost everyone has covered in some situation in their lives, more people can identify with it. It’s a way to approach differences that helps encourage everyone to participate.

  • Lead by example. When company leaders share their own experiences, they empower others to do the same. If you happen to be in the small minority of people who have never covered (if such a group even exists), then relate a story about a family member. Model the courage to get personal.

  • Walk the walk. Your company should have diversity & inclusion policies, but even more importantly, leaders need to ensure that they are acting on those policies. The policies should outline actions and programs, and also make clear how people will be held accountable for results. The real work, however, is done on a personal level, between managers and their direct reports. Managers should build a personal connection with each team member to help them feel understood and welcomed.

 

We all want to fit in, and we all have boundaries about how much personal information we want to share. The key to dealing with covering is to recognize when it is hurting your employees and/or your organization. How much a person reveals is always a choice, but is the choice truly an individual one, or is it driven by implicit or explicit values that limit people’s choices? Your culture should make people feel safe to express as much of themselves as they want.


 

Diversity in Recruiting: How It Can Improve Your Company

 

The tragic death of George Floyd and the demonstrations and civil unrest that followed brought the topics of diversity & inclusion into the spotlight. However, they deserve our attention all the time. The topics are huge, so let’s focus on diversity & inclusion (DE&I) in recruiting. Of course you need to comply with EOE and ADA, but there are some very compelling reasons to promote diversity in your organization and, naturally, recruiting is a great place to start. In this blog series, I’ll share insights, emerging ideas and practical suggestions around D&I in recruiting.

 

In Diversity Wins: How Inclusion Matters, McKinsey & Company make a powerful case for D&I in business. They have tracked hundreds of companies since 2014, essentially measuring the correlations between diversity and performance. They report that, while overall progress toward D&I goals is slow, the companies with greater diversity consistently outperform less diverse companies. For example, with regard to financial performance, companies with significant ethnic diversity are a whopping 36% more likely to outperform less diverse ones.

 

There are plenty of reasons why D&I gives you a competitive advantage. This example is from our own experience at a medical device company, as the company was launching a new product. There were almost no women on the product development team, and they didn’t get input from women health care workers. When the products were launched, women in healthcare considered the materials to be too heavy and the products hard to maneuver. Not surprisingly, the launch wasn’t very successful. Not only were women the intended users, but women make up 70% of the global workforce in healthcare, according to catalyst.org. They are decision influencers in the healthcare profession, as consumers, and the workforce.

 

Another advantage of having a diverse workforce is that it promotes innovation. D&I introduces different perspectives from different life experiences into your organization. According to the World Economic Forum, diverse environments are much more conducive to creativity and innovation than homogeneous ones.

 

It makes sense. If all six of the people in a brainstorming session are from the same background and worldview, it’s likely that they will have similar ideas. Compare that to a team of six that represents diversity in gender, ethnicity, age, sexuality, etc. That team is bound to come up with some great ideas that challenge the status quo. Personally, I would rather sit at the second table — it sounds much more interesting!

 

There are a lot of articles available today on the importance of emotional intelligence (EI) in promoting diversity. But the reverse is also true: Diversity promotes emotional intelligence. Daniel Goleman, a thought leader in EI since 1995, says that diverse environments promote openness to differences. That is a key component of emotional intelligence. D&I and EI feed one another, and both are essential to business success.

 

Diversity is good for all stakeholders in your company, and it is especially important for employee engagement. Almost all studies about engagement indicate that respect and recognition are key factors in retaining great talent. Writing on Fundera.com, Eric Goldschein says that the number one reason good employees quit is a lack of respect. A strong D&I program will help ensure that all employees feel respected, and help you keep your strong performers.

 

A good DE&I program starts with recruiting, and here is one idea that you can start using today. Hopefully it will entice you to check back and read more.

 

While some people approach recruiting with a focus on what the candidate can bring to the company, an emerging best practice is to focus on the needs and motivations of the target audience. Then recruiters can develop messaging about how an open position will fulfill those needs and motivations. This approach borrows concepts like “employment value proposition” from marketing to help attract and engage top talent.

 

A good marketing program recognizes diversity among consumers and adjusts outreach accordingly. A good recruiting program should do the same. For example, if you have entry-level roles to fill, you might reach out to historically black colleges and universities. There are professional groups that address the interests of many groups, and some can help you find talent from groups that have, historically, been underrepresented in certain professions. Two examples are the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) and the Accounting & Financial Women’s Alliance (AFWA).

 

Diversity & inclusion can give your company an advantage in many areas, including performance, innovation and employee engagement. In my next post I’ll explore identifying and minimizing bias in sourcing, interviewing and selecting talent.

 


Diversity in Recruiting: Eliminating Bias

 

Before, we shared how a robust approach to diversity and inclusion (D&I) gives companies a competitive advantage. There are many ways you can and should promote D&I in your organization, and the recruiting function is ideally positioned to play an important role in that effort. One of the more challenging diversity issues in recruitment is bias.

 

Explicit bias is easy to identify, but we all have implicit or unconscious biases that we’re not aware of. Identifying and eliminating bias can be challenging, and here are the key points to consider.

 

Understanding Our Own Biases

No one likes to admit they have biases, and many will deny it outright. However, as the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity, puts it, “Implicit biases are pervasive. Everyone possesses them, even people with avowed commitments to impartiality such as judges.” The first step in minimizing biases, then, is to acknowledge that you have them.

 

A look in the mirror

The Implicit Association Test, available from Harvard University’s Project Implicit, is helpful in getting started. Project Implicit collaborated with MTV to create some variations on the IAT, and you can take them here.

 

The results may be uncomfortable to learn, but a little discomfort is an important step in making change. Having implicit biases doesn’t make you a bad person, it just makes you human. Sources for implicit biases include our upbringing, of course, but also culture and media.

 

Expand exposure — gradually

Now that you are aware of your biases, you can take steps to overcome them. One useful strategy is known as perspective taking, or considering experiences from the point of view of those against whom you have a bias. You can do so by reading or viewing videos about that group. A next step would be to increase your direct interactions with members of that group.

 

Another suggestion is to slow down. Implicit bias operates almost instantaneously in our brains, so before you interact with members of that group, take a moment to reflect. You might think of positive role models from that group.

 

Training Works

Studies show that training on the topic of implicit bias can help people to overcome it. Of particular interest to recruiting is a study demonstrating the training helped men in STEM professions reduce their unconscious bias towards women. Training courses are available from companies like Traliant and Everfli, for both individuals and organizations.

 

Minimizing Bias in Searching, Interviewing, and Selecting

Implicit bias also can be embedded in processes. In addition to new ways of thinking, you need new ways of recruiting. For years recruitment has started from a viewpoint of narrowing the candidate pool. Ultimately you need to narrow the search down, but that’s the end game.

 

Widen your searches

Consider starting by casting a wide net. Loosen up the requirements. For example, is a bachelor’s degree absolutely necessary to be a software developer? Many high schools and summer camps teach software programming and game design, and people can develop strong skills simply by pursuing it as a hobby. A famous example is Facebook Founder Mark Zuckerberg, who attended Harvard but never completed his degree.

 

Use inclusive language

In advertising open positions, use inclusive language. English is rife with embedded male bias, and terms such as “road warrior,” “ninja,” and “assertive” can play against the implicit biases of female candidates. Textio is a well-known solution for eliminating exclusive language, and they have competitors like tapRecruit and Grammarly.

 

Incorporate diversity into the process

There are several things you can do at different stages to make diversity a positive part of your process. For example, you can block out identifying information on résumés to ensure that candidates are chosen based on qualifications only. You should ensure that all interviewers use the same questions — and only those questions — for every candidate. It not only ensures you are comparing apples to apples, but also helps prevent bias from creeping in. In addition, make sure your interview panels are diverse. This will help put candidates from a variety of backgrounds at ease and better enable them to picture themselves as part of your organization.

 

Incremental Change

Eliminating bias and achieving diversity will take time. You should plan on incremental change. At the same time, you need to know where you’re headed, so it’s important to establish diversity goals for your organization. Writing for the American Bar Association, Artika R. Tyner says that a diversity committee isn’t enough. “Today’s diversity and inclusion work requires organizational mission alignment, clear vision integration, strategic planning, commitment, accountability, and resource allocation that involves the entire team.”

 

Another great strategy is to engage a recruiting firm that is committed to diversity hiring. They can help you get your message in front of a diverse audience, and should have recruiters trained in diversity sourcing. Look for an organization that is, itself diverse. At Pierpoint we are proud to have a diverse executive leadership team as well as an overall staff that is 40% women and minorities.

 


 

How Analytics Support Diversity & Inclusion Recruiting

For over decades, HR managers and corporate strategists have asserted that human capital investment is fundamental to high-performing workplaces. Each of such assertions is illustrated by unique equations of measures and antidotes. But none of these measures or color full story provides sufficient reason and justification for investing in human capital.

 

To tackle this multifaceted issue, HR managers can either devise their metrics that resemble the corporate strategy or let the data talk through conscientious analytics and recorded judgments. What’s more, they can develop this wired approach to build workplaces that represent the world that we all live in.

 

Talent acquisition leaders take note that diversity, equity, and inclusion have a well-documented relationship with business performance, organizational culture, and competitive advantages. In plain terms, workforce diversity and inclusion analytics may be just the very right thing to rally the business communities.

 

Diversity and Inclusion for Competitive Advantage


Despite having the end of ‘gaining competitive advantage’ in mind, there keep occurring a regular brainstorming on what sustainable business ‘means.’ Organisations can easily trip up on the details of how HR contributes to competitive advantage. Still, they have trouble in determining how to calculate HR contributions. The pre-occupation of HR to place the right people at the right time with the right pay and on the right role is not hard to imagine. At the same time, they need to use a scientific approach to build a diversified force and reveal the facts around diversity and inclusion recruiting processes and analytics.

 

Tracing D&I Through Times


Nearly 50 years ago, the civil rights act made ‘discrimination at the workplace’ illegal. During those times, laws around equality and diversity were mandated, updated, and implemented, but even now, the problems concerning workplace diversity and inclusion persist. Meanwhile, the global pandemic’s wide-reaching ramifications and a seismic shift to remote working have posed the latest challenges. If not practiced and monitored carefully, channels of communication can break down, initiatives can be put on hold, and feelings of isolation can intensify. But for advanced organizations, success encounters when mistakes are confronted, and winners are analyzed rightfully—establishing that Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion play an important role in improved decision-making, elevated creativity and innovation, and competitive advantage. 

 

Nevertheless, issues and concerns associated with Diversity, Equity & Inclusion cannot be solved with the thumb rule. Organizations would need a comprehensive approach to allow these parameters to play a crucial role. Data and analytics seem to support these endeavors, provide the ability to identify the gaps, prioritize action, and enable progress measurement. Many research reports have indicated that analytics help to unleash the potential of organizations for diversity and inclusion with better confidence. Let’s have a look-

 

How far do statistics support the formula of DE&I?

 

Research by Deloitte, Victorian equal opportunity, and Human Rights Commission points that diversity and inclusion lead to better outcomes. When employees find their organization supportive, they feel included, report better performance, and their ability to innovate uplifts up to 83% and team spirit up to 42%. The same research indicates that employees need to increase their focus on inclusion. For which they have to make a balance between diversity and inclusion. One shall not be overweighed above the other. It says that employee’s feeling of inclusion is driven by the perception of fairness, respect, value, and belongingness. Also, an effective work-life balance is read as a strong signal of an organization’s support for diversity.

 

Another research study by McKinsey highlights that ethnically diverse companies are 35 % more likely to generate better financial returns while gender-diverse companies are 15% more likely to achieve so. Also, the report says that if the gender gap is narrowed by 2025, it has the potential to contribute $12tn additional in GDP.

 

Research conducted by catalyst linking gender diversity with financial performance indicates that companies with more women in top management positions experienced higher ROE up to 34% than companies with the lowest women representations.

 

As per the Deloitte Australia research, inclusive teams outperform their peers by 80% in team-based assessments. It also says that if merely 10% of the employees feel further included, the companies will experience increased work attendance by almost one day per employee per year. The employees will strongly feel confident, empowered, safe to speak up, and inspired to do ‘the best work’ in essence.

 

Consequently, the focus on rebalancing the workforce analytics and configurational view to assemble a set of strategic HR practices proposes a reasonable solid theory. From the beginning, a data-driven hiring approach helps the HR managers to create more diverse workforce tunnels and an inclusive atmosphere to build a robust workforce. For organizations to be an equalizer and outperform the competition, it is necessary to put the corporate strategy where their people are.

 


Tech Tools & AI for Diversity Recruiting (And Melting Walls of Bias)

 

Prejudice and bias are now being eliminated due to the surge in the use of tech tools for diversity recruiting. Helping you in every step of the recruitment process and hiring highly skilled, motivated, and suitable candidates ideal for a specific position. Today’s tech tools for diversity recruiting are meant to be easy-to-use and efficient, saving your company time and money.

 

Diversity recruiting tech tools are helping Talent Acquisition leaders to demolish the biases, prejudices, favoritism, and gender, race, and color tags. According to the Hired’s 2020 State of Salaries Report, there was a notable difference between the salaries of White and Black tech Professionals. Applicants from the Black community were offered less than $10k on average compared to White candidates.

 

DE&I Should Be in the Company’s DNA
(Not Just a Statistic)

 

The success of any business lies in the honest work and high skills of the employees. The tech giant Apple took considerable steps for diversity recruitment in 2020. According to the data presented on Apple’s website, they hired 64% of people from minorities and filled up 43% of the leadership in the USA with them.

 

Diversity recruiting can also have a positive impact on employee retention. Team members can experience a higher level of enthusiasm and motivation that comes from seeing or being part of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DE&I) program. However, DE&I cannot be fully implemented unless management fully adopts and embraces diversity at all company levels through a concise DE&I strategy.

 

Using Tech Tools for Diversity Recruiting

 

Prejudices, bias, and partiality related to gender, race and/or sexual orientation can be targeted with the help of Artificial Intelligence and data science to work impartially. Tech tools have been used for decades now in operational and management processes, but now they are making their way into recruiting.

 

One great example is AirBNB; their use of data has helped them with their diversity recruitment. They focused on gender inequality in the workplace, doubling their female data scientist participation from 15% to 30%.

 

Tech tools should be used at every step of the diversity recruiting process to ensure that the procedure is free from bias and prejudice. Here are some that we recommend using.

1. AI for Job Descriptions

One of the first steps is creating a strategic job description to go with the opening on the company’s career site and supporting platforms. The overall description should not only be appealing, but each word should be bias-free. A popular tool to achieve this is Textio, which is an augmented writing platform that suggests alternatives to certain words that might create a sense of prejudice in the job description.

 

2. Machine Learning for Selecting High-Potential Candidates

Evaluating candidate applications should be done objectively and impartially. Machine learning can be used for equitable candidate assessments, ensuring that applicants with high skills and potential will be selected. Hiretual is a software that can be used for this purpose, using algorithms to get the perfect candidate/position match.

 

3. AI for Impartial Interviewing

After finding appropriate candidates, the next step is to interview them. The tech tools ensure that the interviewers are unbiased during the interview; hence, tech tools for diverse recruiting pick random interview committee members to interview the candidates.

 

The tech tools make the virtual interviews possible, prepare a set of questions to be asked, and help the interviewers to follow hiring criteria for all candidates. Video interviewing is another DE&I tool opportunity, and software like HireVue provides structured interview guides for more consistent and fair interviews.

 

4. AI for Employee Salary Assessment

At this stage, the ideal candidate has been selected. Now, the last to-do thing is to decide the pay of the new employee. Compensation can be defined through machine learning technology that assesses skills, and their market value, without human bias.

 

Companies such as IBM have been working with in-house AI technology to determine salary increases. These decisions are directly related to the employee’s skills and their market value over any other factor, as Johanna Daly, VP of Compensation, Benefits, & HR Business Development at IBM, said  “Certain new skills are scarce and high in value, while other skills have become commoditized”.

 

Pierpoint International is helping talent acquisition teams hire unbiased, high potential, and highly skilled and talented employees for their organizations. We understand the importance of having a DE&I workplace, and for this reason, Pierpoint International makes DE&I internal and external efforts that bring fruitful results.

 

Learn more about our diversity recruiting solutions here.

 

 


Six Tips for Diversity Sourcing

 

Before, we have talked about the competitive advantage diversity brings to organizations, as well as identifying and minimizing bias in the recruitment process. Here are six tips for incorporating diversity into sourcing efforts.

 

 

1. Start with a Plan

It may seem like common sense, but it’s important. For example, in addition to developing diverse candidate slates, you also need to ensure that hiring managers interview diversity candidates. Refer to Part 2 of this series to help prevent bias at the interview stage.

 

2. Incorporate diversity into your employment brand

For years companies paid lip service to diversity, but smart candidates will see right through that. Diversity should be embedded in your company’s culture and vision. Messaging about your brand should emphasize community, including how your company connects to and supports external communities, and also how it functions like one internally. If your company is not yet diverse, focus on how you are open to new viewpoints and ideas.

 

You also should add diversity content to your careers page, such as pictures of company events. You also can include demographics that highlight your company’s diversity, and information about diversity resources you offer.

 

3. Establish relationships with diversity-oriented groups

 

National organizations are a great place to start. These include high-profile groups like the NAACP, NOW, the National LBGTQ Task Force, United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and the National Council on Aging. But don’t stop there. Seek out local chapters and even unique local associations. In addition, look for diversity groups that are professionally focused. Here’s a list just to give you a sampling:

 

  • The Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE)

  • The National Organization of Gay and Lesbian Scientists and Technical Professionals (NoGLSTP)

  • American Medical Women’s Association (AMWA)

  • Asian Women in Business

 

Some associations even support employers in diversity recruiting and inclusion, such as the Employer Assistance and Resource Network on Disability Inclusion (EARN) and the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE).

 

Colleges and college-affiliated groups are also a great source for both recent graduates and alumni. You can target schools with large minority numbers, like Howard University or Bryn Mawr, but many colleges and universities also have organizations and clubs that promote diversity. Check with the local schools in your area.

 

4. Change up your tactics

Now that I have recommended you connect with big associations and major universities, we need to acknowledge that everyone else is doing that, too. It’s still important, but the key to effective sourcing is creativity and critical thinking. You have to brainstorm about what everyone is NOT doing that might be effective. For example, hone your Boolean searching to target diversity. WizardSourcer has a great list of useful Boolean strings.

 

If your job postings are still just the boring, HR-file job descriptions, it’s time to think like a marketing professional. Your job postings should lead off with the things that will attract the talent you want. That means including your diversity messaging in the postings.

 

Host recruiting events that emphasize diversity. You might include speakers from minority groups, or even presentations by your own diverse employees. If the even will include interview opportunities, make sure the interviewers represent the community’s diversity.

 

5. Leverage social media

Job boards typically incorporate diversity posting as a standard part of their service, but posting isn’t enough. You should take advantage of social media to identify groups that can be both sources of talent and influencers in their communities. Recently I went to LinkedIn and searched for “African-American group.” The search turned up over 300 results, from alumni associations to travel clubs specific to African Americans. Even more useful, many of the groups were professional associates.

 

Simply joining a group and announcing, “We’re looking for African-Americans to build diversity at our company” is not the way to go. Instead, review posts to become familiar with group interests, connect with a few group members, and take time to build relationships first.

 

6. Be smart with mobile recruiting

It’s not hard to find articles saying texting is the future of recruiting, particularly if you are targeting Millennial or Gen-Z candidates. But is that a subtle form of ageism? Maybe. However, boomers text, too, so you just want to make you’re your messaging is inclusive. For example, ZipWhip, proprietors of a text platform for business, found that boomers don’t use a lot of acronyms (LOL, BTW, etc.), so they recommend you avoid them.

 

Diversity sourcing is a complex process, and can be overwhelming to your internal HR team. A good recruiting firm, like Pierpoint International, can add diversity savvy to your approach. When deciding on a partner, look for a commitment and results. For example, at Pierpoint we not only have strong expertise, but we also have dedicated diversity recruiters. This has resulted in strong diversity in 80% of our US candidate pipeline slates.


Tech Talent: Changing The Diversity Paradigm (Plus, 6 Ways to Diversify Your Talent Pool)

Tech is changing the world for the better, but hiring diverse tech talent is something it’s still struggling with!

 

For thousands of years, diversity used to be something that wasn’t even considered when hiring the workforce. A lot has changed recently, but gender and racial gaps exist in nearly every field, especially tech. It’s a male-dominated field with little diversity within its ranks. From facial recognition discriminating against people of color and VR headsets designed mainly for men, there’s no shortage of bias in technology.

 

According to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), tech has employed a larger share of whites (almost 63.5 to 68.5 percent) as compared to the rest of the private sector. Due to this homogeneity, women, and people of color find it difficult to adjust.

 

In this article, we will discuss how you can bring about change by hiring diverse tech talent in your organization.

 

6 Ways to Diversify Your Tech Talent Pool

Recruiters must ensure that the hiring process is fair and inclusive. By keeping your talent pool small, not only are they unfair to the masses but also miss out on opportunities and perspectives that a diverse workforce brings.

 

Over time, it becomes difficult for a homogenous workforce to look at old problems in a new way. Creativity is innovation, without which you can’t survive in the tech world.

 

Here are six ways to diversify your tech talent pool.

1. Make Diversity Part of Your Company’s Culture

 

Your company’s culture is formed in its earliest days. Recruiting white people from the beginning can form a culture that encourages whites only. Afterward, it can be quite challenging to bring a more diverse workforce.

 

Recruiting a diverse workforce from the early days of the company makes it easy to maintain that. A diverse workforce attracts diverse candidates.

 

It’s natural to feel more comfortable in a room with a variety of people rather than a room full of a particular group of people.  Even if your workforce is not as diverse and you like, there’s still much you can do to change that!

 

2. Diversify Your Recruiting Team

The first step towards hiring diverse tech talent is to diversify your recruiting team.

 

A diverse recruitment team shows the company’s commitment to diversification. If the interviewers reflect the ethnicity, color, and gender of the candidates, they’ll feel more at home. It’s easier to connect with people who look and sound like you!

 

If you’re using an agency for hiring candidates, then it’s essential to let them know that you’re looking for diverse tech talent.

 

In a lot of cases, unintentional bias keeps excludes a candidate. The blind screening process can also prove beneficial in such cases as it eliminates unintentional bias and attracts diverse talent. Removing name, and school from the resume and keeping the degree and necessary skills is the way to go!

 

3. Utilize a Range of Sources in Your Recruitment Campaign

 

Using the same old resources for hiring tech talent will likely yield the same results too.

 

For diversity recruiting, there are a variety of sources that you can utilize, such as job boards, referrals, recruitment agencies, and headhunting. Mix up these techniques to engage with people from a wide range of backgrounds.

 

4. Make The Job Descriptions Inclusive

One can never underestimate the power of words! 

 

Job descriptions say a lot about a company’s brand identity and culture. It’s important to be conscious of the wordings in your job description.

 

Using a more inclusive job description can attract diverse tech talent to apply. On the other hand, masculine choice of words can intimidate and discourage certain candidates, specifically women.

 

You can miss out on highly skilled tech talent from minorities if your job description is not inclusive.

5. Offer Referral Incentives

Employee referral programs are another great way to meet the talent that you’d otherwise never know.

 

According to a report by Payscale on the effects of referrals, a third of workers received some kind of referrals for their current jobs. However, referrals can also lead to a less diverse workforce as women and people of color are less likely to be referred to as compared to their male counterparts.

To address that issue, you can offer incentives for introducing people who are underrepresented in your workforce. It encourages the current employees to refer qualified candidates and helps them feel valued in the corporation.

 

6. Partner with Alternative Training Programs

White males dominate the tech industry and college computer science departments. If you find your candidates from computer science colleges then it’s no wonder you have limited diversity among your workforce.

 

Universities opened their doors for women and people of color only in the 18th century. In the early days of computers, there were more women engaged in the field, which changed when typing was no longer considered important to pursue computer science. Ironically, now there are more women obtaining college degrees, but very few are studying computer science.

 

Many talented people are self-learners or learn through alternative training programs. LaunchCode’s Coder Girl program is an excellent example of such a program. It equips women with the technical skills they need to get started. You can hire diverse tech talent by partnering with alternative training programs and expanding your horizons beyond college graduates.

 

Ready to Hire Diverse Tech Talent?

Recruiters have long since struggled to diversify their workforce, but in the post-Covid times, it’s easier than ever. Now that they know work can be done from anywhere, they’re no longer bound by geographical constraints (or any other!).

 

Pandemic taught us the importance of diverse and remote teams. If your current strategy for diversity is not working, then get out of your comfort zone. Hunt for diverse tech talent elsewhere or hire someone else to do it for you!

 

Pierpoint is a leading RPO services provider for niche and hard-to-fill positions. Our clientele ranges from Fortune 500 companies to mid-sized firms. We offer various recruitment solutions and use a scientific, data-driven approach to develop customized solutions for businesses.

 

In the end, it all comes down to your goodwill and recruitment team. If you diversify your tech team with the aim of inclusion, then it’s likely to happen sooner than later!

 


 

 

How to Create an Inclusive (DE&I Compliant) High Volume Hiring Strategy

 

 

Workplace diversity is all about accepting different individuals and creating an inclusive environment for all. If diversity and inclusion are valued in an organization, it means it allows each employee to make contributions based on their unique experiences, skill sets, and attitudes. Naturally, it unlocks the potential to create an overwhelming impact on the work culture, productivity, and morale of the employees of that organization. Diversity is just not a fad, rather companies of all sizes, and ages keep trying to attain upward spikes for benefits attached with building heterogeneous teams.

 

As a high-volume hiring manager, you shall delve deep into how a diverse team can make your business a true representative of society and bring a better understanding with all its stakeholders. Essentially, it helps you market and sells yourself in a much-personalized way. A study by LinkedIn points that diversity roles are up by 71% over the last five years. Importantly, the incidents of outcry over systematic racism had intensified the demand for diversity and inclusion in volume hiring, making it as much a moral imperative.

 

Now, how to ensure diversity in the workplace during volume hiring. Below are some steps to guide.

 

1. Review Your DE&I Strategy Before Volume Hiring

McKinsey and Deloitte in their research reports have pointed out that high-performing companies focus more on creating inclusive talent systems to outperform their peers, statistically. McKinsey’s study shows that gender-diverse companies outperform 15% and ethnically-diverse companies are likely to do the same by 35%. This correlation does indicate that when hiring managers keep D & I in the top quartile, they are more successful. Diverse companies are more likely to win employees’ trust, improve decision-making with better customer orientation and leverage.

 

Hiring managers can set the following objectives before volume hiring to have a good baseline.

 

  • Have you created a job description for each role, listed necessary skills, and removed elements of bias-ness in those job descriptions?

  • What do you want to see in an ideal candidate? Don’t forget to include different cultural characteristics, and skill mix to broaden your search for it.

  • What impact do you want to have with each role, and why? And, to whom will this role impact the most?

  • Under which influence you initiated hiring for these roles? Any intrinsic or extrinsic factors? What long-term impact will they have on the mission and philosophies of your business?

 

If you have taken time to assess yourself on the things above and still give a go-ahead to hire, then it’s time to talk about how to make hiring for DE&I roles.

 

2. Making Volume Hiring for Diverse and Inclusive Roles

Industries contrast in nature and address their unique issues differently. The first-timers shall set hiring strategies for high-volume hiring, find out what works/doesn’t work, and then redefine them accordingly. To reach your hiring goals successfully, the next set of answers shall be on these questions:

 

  • Determine how you will reach the candidates. Are you hiring the candidate from the talent pool-internally or externally? If hiring from the internal pool, how will you weigh a person with little experience and training in such roles? And, if hiring from an external source, how are you going to cast your net wider and stay unbiased during the interview process?

  • How concise, rigorous, and measurable will the interview be for DE&I candidates?

 

Now, if your search has landed you to your desired candidates, see how to set the success further.

3. Mapping Success Ahead After DE&I Volume Recruitments

Companies taking their D & I efforts cannot enjoy victory celebration, as inclusion never stops, and success always remains illusionary. However, small wins, inevitable best practices, and some compelling efforts can help businesses to gain traction in their sight. Doing homework on another set of questions can help you triumph.

 

  • Have you set the accountability rightfully? And, ensure that the newly recruited are engaged and aware of these communication lines clearly and therefore, journey.

  • Are they clear with the seniority level? And, is it communicated thoroughly for its roles, intentions, and reasons for such preparedness?

  • Is the picture clear on the budget and other financial implications attached to these roles? What tools, training, sponsorships, partnerships, and memberships are you referring to when finalizing these items?

 

No matter which corner of the world your company is headquartered in, achieving diversity and inclusivity is still challenging related to centralism, biasedness, silos, perception, team burnouts, and more. The way out is to see D & I, more an integrated business function rather than merely an HR function.

 

A team at the organization level needs to sit together, frame direct or dotted lines, and embed efforts simply beyond plain hiring. What’s more, the diversity leaders shall not forget to support the core cause publicly- in-person or on social media- to lead with the jobs of the moment.