In the world of business, everything is measured. The same goes for our hiring practices. Diversity and inclusion cannot be an initiative that is only spoken about. As Sophie Bellon, Chairwoman of Sodexo, tells us “what gets measured gets done.” The same goes for our hiring practices. HR and hiring managers should be establishing diversity goals to encourage diverse hiring practices throughout the company. However, although 42% of the population self-identifies as “multicultural”: African-American; Hispanic; Asian; Disabled or LGBTQ+, an AIMM’s Multicultural Benchmark Study shows that only 16% of marketers imbue their outreach with cultural insights aimed at these audiences. AIMM is a committee formed by the ANA (Association of National Advertisers)and is short for Alliance for Inclusive and Multicultural Marketing.
Human resources, top level executives, hiring managers, and employees should make it a priority to sit down and define what diversity looks like within the company. Hold a town hall or fireside chat so all members of your organization can get involved in defining what their workplace will look like and what improvements should be implemented in the hiring process. Here are some tips on how companies throughout the country have set and achieved their goals.
Match the Demographics of the Country
With countless different voices in the country, it can be difficult to ensure that all are represented within the organization. That is why many companies strive to match the racial demographics of the country to ensure all voices are present in proportion to the population. Specifically with Gen-Z consumers, younger consumers are drawn to companies that are representative of the diversity that exists within the world and want brands that demonstrate they are leading the march serving all consumers.
Diversify all Levels of Management
In addition to diverse hiring practices, make sure that you continue to empower different voices within the organization from interns to C-Suite executives. Diversity will not be effective if your diverse employees are concentrated at the bottom levels of management. Having diversity at all levels of your corporation allows for the dissemination of experience and solutions at all levels that will be integrated for an enhanced problem solving capacity for your business.
Invest in a Chief Diversity Officer
Consider your Chief Diversity Officer your accountability partner. With his/her team, the CDO will measure the effectiveness of your diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives and find areas to improve diversity practices by creating a report for top management every quarter. Although it’s possible to achieve diversity without a CDO, remember that achieving DEI in a company is a sensitive task that can sometimes lead to frustration if not incorporated correctly. Therefore, a certified and experienced CDO will help aid in the implementation of strategies and help you get the most of the benefits of diversity.
Strive for Diversity and Inclusion Awards
Various awards and recognitions exist for companies that have excelled in their DEI practices. Such awards include the Human Rights Campaign's Corporate Equality Index, Bloomberg's Gender Equality Ranking, NASSCOM Corporate Awards for Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion among various other awards. Although these awards shouldn’t necessarily be your motivation for implementing DEI strategies they represent a good benchmark to how well you are achieving your goals.
Diversity Tip: Know the difference between a goal and a quota.
Although diversity should be a goal for all growing companies, it is important that it is not forced on business leaders as a mandate from HR, but rather an attitude that is adopted by all managers throughout the company. This will lead your leaders to create goals as opposed to filling quotas. A goal is created because hiring managers recognize the value of diversity and thus they encourage diverse hiring practices. Whereas, a quota forces hiring practices without valuing what diverse talent brings to the table.
Diversity and inclusion is an essential part to growing your business to reflect the modern day workforce and the modern day consumer. More than ever, consumers expect businesses to be diverse, equitable, and inclusive and will reward businesses who represent these values. While it can be tricky, DEI is well worth it and pays off in consumer loyalty and brand recognition. At DCAProSearch we have been leading the way in diversity recruiting finding diverse talent for companies and agencies for over 20 years and we will continue to shout the importance of DEI from the rooftops until diversity, equity, and inclusion are recognized as the standard. We have been, and will always be, your diversity recruiter.