Candidate Pools & Proactive Recruiting, Diversity, Employer Branding

How to Promote Diversity and Inclusion

Saying that your organization welcomes diverse candidates is easy. But actually promoting diversity and inclusion requires effort, and attention to detail.

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Here are a dozen tips to help your organization attract diverse candidates and build an inclusive workplace.

Define diversity. Define what diversity means to your organization. A 2017 study underscores why this is important. Not only does defining diversity help you know where to focus, it allows you to hone your messaging and measure results.

Commit to diversity. A half-hearted effort to promote diversity and inclusion will likely come across as such to your audience. What’s more, without commitment, no one is accountable for results – and without accountability, initiatives tend to fall by the wayside. You want buy-in from senior leaders, and from managers throughout the organization.

Share statistics. Metrics matter. First, understand data’s role in diversity. Then, measure the success of your diversity initiatives. Finally, share your success with others, including your job candidate audience.

Leverage your careers site. Make sure your careers site or careers page reflects your commitment to diversity. Include a statement about this commitment. Also include photos that show your diverse employee population.

Feature testimonials from HR professionals, employees, and others about the community that is your company. These can be written testimonials or video testimonials.

Aim for and tout supplier diversity. Show that you do business with diverse vendors. Issuing press releases related to partnership agreements is one way to do this. Distribute these press releases widely and post them at your website in a news section.

Consider creating affinity groups. These groups will provide support for diverse employees and help you attract diverse candidates.

Offer mentor programs for diverse employees. Formal mentoring programs, such as programs aimed at developing women leaders, reaffirm your company’s commitment to diversity. These programs also help attract diverse candidates.

Join associations that focus on diversity. Membership in associations that focus on diversity will help position your company as an employer committed to diversity and inclusion. Membership will also provide an opportunity to interact with and learn from other organizations.

Apply for diversity awards. Best company awards, for diversity, women, working mothers, and others, reflect positively on your employer brand and help you attract job candidates. Apply for these awards. If you receive an award, tout it by issuing a press release and featuring the award at your website.

Support community outreach initiatives. State, city, and county initiatives that involve reaching out to diverse populations for the purpose of promoting career opportunities are not uncommon. These initiatives can be a great source of candidates. Your involvement in and support of diversity initiatives may also result in media coverage, which will reflect favorably on your company.

Celebrate diversity. Take advantage of occasions to celebrate diversity, including but not limited to Black History Month. Share your stories and offer support on social media.

Learn from others. Look for webinars, podcasts, and conference sessions that focus on diversity and inclusion. Learn from best practices; consider unconventional ideas.

At the same time, don’t overlook your staff as a source of information. Ask your diverse employees about how your organization supports their careers. Use this information to make changes, if necessary, while building on what works.

Paula Paula Santonocito, Contributing Editor for Recruiting Daily Advisor, is a business journalist specializing in employment issues. She is the author of more than 1,000 articles on a wide range of human resource and career topics, with an emphasis on recruiting and hiring. Her articles have been featured in many global and domestic publications and information outlets, referenced in academic and legal publications as well as books, and translated into several languages.