3 Ways to Increase Cultural Diversity in the Workplace Through Hiring Policies
The issue of company culture and diversity is one that many businesses have found challenging. It’s a simple fact of origins that most businesses start with a better ability to understand and cater to the cultures of the founders but unless your organization’s mission is to work with a specific demographic, the ideal office is a diverse one with a company culture that has little to do with any national or ethnic cultures. Unfortunately, not every company has an easy time making the transition from a small team of fairly similar people to a diverse established firm. Even if there’s no prejudice in the office, there is often still a subtle cultural bias, usually paired with a simple lack of knowledge of where and how to post job listings to draw diverse applicants. In other cases, a company may have great diversity policies but the local population it primarily made up of only one or two identifiable demographics.
When working on your plans to improve diverse hiring, it’s important to know what you can control about your current demographic percentages, where natural bias can be neutralized, and how to remain satisfactorily transparent with the public about your policies and inclusive attitude.
1) Blind Resume Assessment
It’s a well-known fact that part of a hiring manager’s job is intuition. Will the new hire work well with the existing team? Will the fit in with the company culture? These are important questions to ask but sometimes do not work well with the concept of diversity hiring. Without realizing it, the gut-feeling choices made by hiring managers can lead to less diverse recruits who are judges able to ‘fit in’ quickly, usually because they share a culture with most of the other employees.
Studies have shown that the best way to counter this issue is to make the first round of candidate selection blind. Take out anything that has been known to induce bias like names, genders, and ages and ask your hiring managers to choose the ones who get interviewed based on credentials and possibly skill assessment scores alone. This will encourage fairness and when your managers do meet the faces to match the resumes, their expectations will be set by numbers and facts, not cultural stereotypes.
2) Diversify Your Listing Policies
Managing your job listings is one of the most important aspects of modern hiring. However, manicuring your listings and keeping the open positions current isn’t your only responsibility. If you want to change the diversity percentages of your candidates, consider diversifying the platforms on which you list. The various available job boards are appealing to different people, so the more you list on, the wider a selection you will get of possible candidates. You can also make use of hiring platforms that cater to specific demographics to correct a single hiring imbalance or to pull from a variety of diversifying sources.
3) Relocation and Work Visas
If your concern is the availability of diverse hires skewing your numbers, remember that many people are more than happy to travel and relocate for work, especially if you are willing to help them move some place interesting and new or sponsor a visa. Relocation packages allow you to extend your hiring radius to include the entire country and being willing to sponsor work visas extends your reach to the world and as much diversity as it has to offer. With smart relocation and visa policies, you can quickly go from a diversity deficit to an industry leader in diverse teams.
Whether you’re looking to maintain a healthy diverse staff balance in the face of the current hiring crunch or need to improve your demographic percentages, diversity is a subject that matters a great deal to the public. When everyone’s office begins to resemble the Enterprise from Star Trek, we might be able to finally relax and be diverse without having to work at it.
The Network Editorial Team