Let us start off by differentiating between diversity and inclusion. Diversity is any dimension that is used in defining groups or people one from another which could be under the umbrella of age, gender, ethnicity, religion, disability, sexual orientation, education, and national origin. Inclusion, on the other hand, is the active ways and methods companies work to provide safe and welcoming spaces for people from diverse backgrounds. So how can you as an organization be able to improve diversity during recruitment?
Assess current methods
If you really want to become more diverse you must consider reviewing HR practices and policies. This can identify the different barriers that reduce diversity and also find different places in the process that may be good but need improvement to refine the process of hiring diverse candidates.
Pick one metric to focus on
While you might want diversity of workers in your organization, the truth is that it takes time and you need to focus your effort on one metric in order to grow in a reasonable and sustainable way. An example is to increase the amount of minorities in senior management positions by 10% in one year.
Language is a strong influence in how people react and words mean things, don’t forget it. So when posting a job anywhere note how you word the expectation for the employee could deter some candidates from applying. Using male dominant codes such as university studied from (especially prestigious ones), work experience or studying a particular curriculum. This brings people who have been privileged which are usually not minorities as is the case with Facebook’s case when tried to hire more diversity in their company. Keep it open to allow anyone to apply for the position.
Location, location, location
When thinking about posting a job offering always consider the location of where you can get the kind of employees who can increase diversity within the organization. One employer went to the extent of posting her job offering at a daycare center in order to put a message to people who used the daycare services. The message was I understand your responsibilities and I am willing to cater to them. Location is not only physical but can be virtual also. When posting a new job online consider the channels that you could use to attract the diverse talent you want.
While this may seem like a cliche, if you want to attract diversity you must show your company’s image such that you consider diversity a priority. Focus on making sure your website, marketing material or any material at all has pictures of different people that will make diverse hires to consider applying to your company.
Walk the talk
While it is easier to show your company to be inclusive that is less than half of the job, you need to focus on providing an environment of inclusiveness. This could be done by providing different opportunities such implementing policies that provide equal opportunities for minorities, diversity training, and coaching, familiarizing them with the work environment as quickly as possible, providing mentors, showing them opportunities to grow within the company etc. Just know that hiring is the end of the process.