Diversity Hiring 101: A Quintessential Guide for Agency Recruiters

Organizations across the globe are focusing on improving their hiring processes. However, diversity hiring goes well beyond business results and execution.

Building teams with qualified applicants, giving little importance to their sex, foundation, race, religion, or sexual orientation, is now a genuine need in companies across all sectors.

Given the importance of diversity hiring in 2022, we have simplified what it means when it comes to recruiting for your clients.

What is Diversity Hiring?

Diversity hiring is a process where recruiters actively seek out job candidates from diverse backgrounds.

Here, you’re expected to take steps to ensure your talent acquisition processes are more inclusive. Removing barriers that prevent great candidates from getting equal opportunities during the hiring process becomes crucial.

Workplace diversity is often described as understanding, accepting, and valuing differences between individuals from different fields. This can be related to numerous age brackets, religions, disabilities, personalities, skill sets, experiences, and even knowledge.

The primary goal of diversity hiring is to identify and remove biases in sourcing, screening, and especially while shortlisting candidates.

You can say that diversity hiring makes good business sense, further driving strong performances from candidates.

The playing field is leveled, and by creating a more diverse workplace in general, you provide employees with opportunities to collaborate with people who boast a variety of experiences and knowledge.

3 Main Obstacles to DEI Initiatives (& Solutions to Counter Them)

diversity hiring

Your DEI initiatives can suffer a hindrance primarily because of 3 obstacles–

Obstacle 1: Diversity Fatigue

Diversity fatigue can manifest itself in various ways, depending on where your client organization and its people are in their D&I journeys.

Here are a few examples of those forms–

  1. Employees can believe that getting diverse candidates “lowers the bar.”
  2. For white, cisgender, heterosexual males, who are often the majority in any particular institution, diversity fatigue frequently shows up as sentiments of threat. Most workers may see diversity initiatives as something they are “on the wrong side of” or as a dialogue intended to exclude them.
  3. Such fatigue might also manifest in the TA teams who believe diversity sourcing results from a talent shortage. After all, they’re being pushed to find a diverse applicant pool in the face of what amounts to a “supply-and-demand dilemma.”
  4. A considerable amount of emotional labor is expended in DEI campaigns for workers who are firmly committed to the cause.

Solutions for Diversity Fatigue

  • Dispel common assumptions: Diversity recruiting does not “lower the bar.” Your diversity efforts do not intend to exclude or stigmatize non-minority talent and there is enough underrepresented talent to fill your available positions.
  • Remember that you are only at the beginning of a long journey: Setting unreasonable goals will only serve to demoralize everyone involved.

Obstacle 2: Vague DEI Strategies

One type of fatigue that we didn’t cover occurs when one team bears the lion’s share of the labor (both material and emotional). Still, its efforts are hampered by neglect in other departments of your client’s organization.

This is common for recruiters when the firm under-indexes on the “I” (inclusion) or the “E” (exclusion) (equity).

Diversity is defined by objective and quantifiable statistics that equal tangible representation.

Inclusion is its fuzzier, more enigmatic sibling word. It is based on sentiments of belonging and is subjective.

While inclusion encourages everyone’s participation and guarantees that everyone’s voice is heard, equity ensures that everyone has access to opportunities, knowledge, and resources that will help them develop and succeed.

Solutions for Vague DEI Strategies

  • Examine how your organization now supports minority talent: Utilize the questions provided, exit interviews and one-on-ones with employees, and data from your Recruitment CRM. For example, which group of candidates is refusing offers? Which have the highest rates of attrition?
  • In conjunction with external research and advice from DEI specialists, use those responses to assist top management in strategizing policies and programs to promote sentiments of inclusion in the company.

Obstacle 3: Unconscious Bias

This last hurdle to forming and sustaining diverse teams is the most dangerous.

Research demonstrates that even self-proclaimed advocates are often a part of subconscious bias with which they do not consciously agree. We can’t deny how powerful and deeply embedded these associations are.

As a result, even the most well-intentioned recruiters must check their judgments.

It’s worth recalling the 2004 MIT and University of Chicago research on perceived race in hiring, in which 5,000 fictional applications were distributed to 1,250 employers: “White-sounding” names (Emily and Greg) received 50% more calls than “Black-sounding” ones (Lakisha and Jamal).

According to statistics from 80,000 recruiters globally as recently as 2020, when recruiters source prospects on LinkedIn, regardless of gender, they are more inclined to click on male profiles.

Even when URMs conduct sourcing, there is an unconscious bias against minorities. It’s a problematic war being waged on several fronts, ranging from racism to sexism to ageism to ableism.

Solutions for Unconscious Bias:

Learn about unconscious biases and understand where yours lie. (This will need curiosity, honesty, and vulnerability.)

Harvard’s Project Implicit is a wonderful resource that provides a series of Implicit Association Tests to bring the unconscious into the conscious.

In addition, Facebook provides “Managing Unconscious Prejudice” training, consisting of a series of video sessions that tackle a distinct bias.

  • Share these tools with your colleagues, hiring managers, top management, and anybody else in your business who can benefit from them.
  • Make a point of emphasizing the significance of self-awareness. You may also assist in organizing unconscious bias training for your client’s employees so that all teams can eventually engage in more inclusive sourcing, hiring, and assessment procedures.

Steps to Hiring More Diverse Candidates

diversity hiring

Step 1: Conduct a Diversity Employing Review

Survey your current recruiting technique and distinguish any possible blockages and disparities. For example, is it a top-of-the-
pipe issue? Or is it a spilling pipeline issue?

Until you investigate your diversity employment data, you can’t get a precise image of how to improve your process.

Step 2: Pick a Point to Improve

Attempting to redesign your diversity recruiting measurements can be overpowering. The most straightforward approach to improving diversity in hiring is to pick one measurement to improve.

Set goals like increasing the level of qualified female workers in tech-related jobs by 10% within half a year or increasing the level of qualified minorities in your business group by 15% within half a year.

Step 3: Change Your Candidate Sourcing Strategy

If your hiring review uncovers that you’re failing to pull in diverse candidates, here are a few things you can do–

  • Write your job descriptions in a more inclusive manner
  • Show off your client’s diverse employer brand
  • Offer flexibility
  • Encourage references from minority workers

Step 4: Increase Diversity While Applicant Screening

In the event that your diversity employment review uncovers that you have a spilling pipeline at your competitor screening, there are a couple of incredible methods you can attempt.

Method 1: Pre-enlist evaluation

A recent study discovered that organizations that utilize a pre-enlist character evaluation have working environments that are all the more racially different. Character appraisals help increase work environment diversity since character scores don’t fundamentally differ for minority bunch individuals (i.e., no unfriendly effect).

Device 2: Blind employing

Blind employing is any method that anonymizes or “blinds” individual data about a competitor from the employer or hiring manager that can prompt oblivious (or cognizant) preference about the applicant. Practicing blind employment can help organizations attain their goal of diversity recruiting to a great extent.

Step 5: Increase Diversity in Shortlisting

In the event that your diversity recruiting review uncovers that the bottleneck is in your competitor shortlisting, there are two strategies you should think about.

Strategy 1: The “two in the pool impact”

A study as highlighted in Harvard Business Review found that when the last applicant pool has just a single minority leader, the person has basically no odds of being employed.

On the other hand, if there are at any rate two female candidates in the last competitor pool, the chances of recruiting a female applicant are multiple times more prominent. Again, if there are at least two minority applicants in the last competitor pool, the chances of employing a minority candidate are multiple times more noteworthy.

Strategy 2: Shortlisting Via An Applicant Tracking System

Robotized and quick shortlisting via an ATS expands work environment variety by replacing the most dreary and tedious piece of enrollment: manual shortlisting. The shortlisting programming then unbiasedly and reliably applies this standard across all competitors, which lessens issues identified with unconscious bias.

Step 6: Evaluate Your Methods

Return to diversity hiring— the metric objective you chose in Step 2. Did you hit your aim? Which techniques were compelling and which ones weren’t? In the event that you were fruitful at hitting your hiring objective, do this process again. If not, assess which methodologies were viable and which ones weren’t and re-repeat the cycle.

In Final Words

  • Workplace diversity is understanding, accepting, and valuing differences between people of different variations and compartments.
  • According to major research, it has been found that diverse workplaces are higher in performance and enhance innovation along with sales, and stock returns.
  • Sometimes it so happens that demographic diversity leads to interpersonal conflict which requires more communication and management till a mutual understanding is gained.
  • Recruiters and talent acquisition leaders need to provide support and an official system in place to increase. It’s important for leaders to attract more diverse candidates through more carefully worded job postings, flexible work schedules, assessments, along with tapping into novel candidate pipelines.
  • AI-powered software technology like an Applicant Tracking System is the future and helps to enable recruiters and talent acquisition professionals to increase diversity through automated screening and blind hiring which eases their work.
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