Indeed is Leading HR By Promoting Diversity and Inclusion
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Diversity and inclusion are at the top of many human resource agendas as we move toward the third decade of the 21st century. For those lagging behind in this regard, creating a fairer and more equal workforce should be a top priority.
We have come a long way when it comes to addressing many of the imbalances in our industry, but there is still plenty of work to be done. And, for those who remain unconvinced by the social justice case for diversity and inclusion, creating a more equal workforce has proven and tangible benefits for businesses as well.
Benefits of Diversity and Inclusion
First of all, people want to feel valued at work. If they feel they work for a company that treats people fairly and with dignity and respect, they are going to work harder and be more productive. Creating an inclusive environment will also make your organization more attractive to the very best talent when recruitment time comes around.
A more diverse workforce also brings benefits when it comes to developing new products and business ideas. People from different backgrounds will bring a diverse range of ideas and viewpoints with them, informed from their varying social and cultural experiences. They also provide the ability to open new market opportunities, improve market share and broaden an organization's potential customer base.
Finally, there is corporate responsibility and reputation to consider. Social exclusion and low economic activity rates limit business markets and their growth. Corporate responsibility used to be focussed almost exclusively on environmental issues, but now the focus is also turning to a holistic view of the organization and its ability to attract ever more discerning customers and employees. Various headline issues - such as the gender pay gap - have gone a long way towards shining a light on diversity and inclusion and have brought increased transparency and accountability to the fight for equality.
"Overcoming prejudice and changing entrenched negative attitudes can be difficult," reports the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD). "To progress diversity, organizations should focus on developing inclusive approaches to employment policies and practices, to personal behaviors, and by managing equality and diversity issues in ways that also support business contexts. Ultimately, action should be underpinned by the principles of equal opportunity, fairness, and transparency. Organizations must go beyond minimal compliance with the law, ensuring that everyone is valued and supported as an individual."
As a major player in the employment-related search engine industry, Indeed understands the importance of diversity and inclusion in the workforce more than most and has a firm strategy for creating a more equal talent pipeline.
The first step is to recognize the unconscious biases that we all possess. Psychological research tells us that we encounter over 100 cognitive biases every day and even the most socially aware of us can fall foul to making snap decisions about people based on preconceptions and prejudices. As long as recruitment is still largely driven by human decision making, there will exist the danger of these biases influencing the process.
Some very easy to implement ways to eliminate or at least reduce these biases is to create objective and standardized processes for candidate consideration. Standardized questions and evaluation criteria for candidate screening will all help create a level playing field where only the most relevant qualities are taken into consideration.
There is also a wide range of software which can be deployed to perform tasks such as anonymizing, hiding certain job-seeker attributes, and creating blind resume profiles. At some point, a human still needs to make the final decision, but by automating a portion of the process, especially in the early stages, employers can let unbiased AI handle the cognitive heavy lifting.
You can also expand the geography and channel of your talent searches. Thankfully in an age of social media, it's easier than ever to access diverse and inclusive groups of people through organizations such as Women Who Code or the Urban Technology Movement. Data repositories such as the Pew Research Centre or the US Bureau of Labour Statistics also have a vast amount of free information which can be used to find geographic locations with higher densities of underrepresented people.
The increase in popularity of remote working has also made it easier than ever to have a global workforce and access the more diverse range of skills and ideas that come with it.
"Whether you're with a 10-person startup or a multinational conglomerate, one thing is clear: you need to build an inclusive recruiting pipeline," said Indeed in a blog post. "The business benefits of a diverse and inclusive workforce are well-documented - from the bottom-line impact on revenue to greater team creativity and improved product innovation. And job seekers today increasingly expect employers to raise their game when it comes to building an inclusive workplace to drive a sense of belonging."
You can hear Indeed's Manager of Retail Insights, Chip Borsl, speak at HR Retail 2020, taking place in April at the Hilton Austin, TX.
Download the agenda today for more information and insights.