How to Increase Diversity in the Workplace

Group Of Diverse People Waiting For Job Interview

Diversity in the workplace involves employees who differ in race, ethnicity, age, gender, education, religion, ability, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic status. A diverse workforce provides new ideas and perspectives, leading to more significant innovation.

Increasing diversity in the workplace elevates employee engagement, performance, and productivity. This leads to greater job satisfaction, employee morale, and retention.

Implement these tips to increase diversity in the workplace:

Target Diverse Candidates

Look for diverse candidates where they like to spend time. This may include online and in-person groups that focus on your industry.

Build relationships with diverse individuals who may be interested in new opportunities. Also, post your openings on job boards for these group members. Interview the most qualified candidates.

Ask diverse employees to provide referrals. They likely have connections with similar backgrounds and personality traits. These referrals will probably fit the company culture and have the qualifications required for the role.

Promote Equity in the Workforce

Equity ensures that all employees have access to the necessary resources and opportunities that fit their goals and needs. This creates a similar way for diverse employees to secure bonuses, raises, and promotions.

Supporting equity in the workplace empowers diverse employees to perform their best. Access to the resources needed to succeed provides equal opportunities for growth and development.

For instance, ensuring diversity in company leadership requires that all employees have the resources needed to develop the qualifications for promotions. Whereas some employees may need specific hard skills, others might require coaching to develop specific soft skills. Developing the necessary skills provides these employees equal opportunities to advance into leadership positions within the organization.

Train Managers on Inclusion  

Diverse employees need to feel included at work. Employees who feel welcome, valued, and respected perform their best. They get along with others and collaborate to reach business goals.

Diverse employees who feel included will likely refer their connections to the company’s job openings. This increases diversity in the workplace.

Managers work on the frontline and serve as the bridge between employees and company leaders. As a result, managers should be trained to promote an inclusive company culture.

For instance, managers should regularly participate in cultural training, diversity workshops, and unconscious bias training. Then, these managers can share what they learn with their employees to promote fair treatment for everyone.

Managers can regularly send anonymous employee surveys for feedback on how inclusive their employees feel the workplace is. The results can be used to identify areas that require additional training and implementation.

Recognize Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Conversations

Employees at every level should publicly appreciate anyone whose actions are sensitive to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). Behaving in ways that support these initiatives helps make DEI part of the company’s culture.

For instance, a manager might witness an employee commenting to a coworker that shows respect for the coworker’s religious beliefs and customs. The manager could point out how happy they are to see this behavior, then ask to learn more about these beliefs and traditions.

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