A Guide to Inclusive Hiring
Nowadays, having a diverse and inclusive company culture is mandatory for any company, irrespective of the field your business activates in. To create a diverse work environment you need to start with a strong foundation. The foundation of any business lays in its people. This is why you should adapt your hiring strategy to the new norms of inclusivity.
What is inclusive hiring?
Executive decisions should solely be based on job-related skills and personal abilities possessed by applicants. Sometimes, we tend to hire people who are more similar to us, falling into a comfortable pattern. This is an unconscious bias that hinders the recruitment process.
Inclusive hiring is the process of actively seeking a diverse set of candidates through mutual understanding and embracing of different backgrounds and insights. Hiring people from repressed backgrounds or with disabilities to check an item off your list is not enough. Instead, those practices aim to equalize the playing field for all candidates and fight against recruitment bias or any form of discrimination.
Employers are bound by the law to treat all candidates equally. No individuals should be denied work opportunities based on their characteristics, and those are not limited to race and gender. Leaders should become familiar with those laws that ensure fair hiring practices.
Why is inclusive hiring important?
From a business perspective, inclusive hiring has many advantages. Studies show that diverse organisations are 45% more likely to improve their market share.
Inclusive hiring practices strengthen reputation, which draws more competitive talent towards your company. A Monster study shows that four in five employees from all over the world consider diversity, inclusion and equity important to them. Working with a diverse pool of talent leads to higher levels of productivity, innovation and performance. It also helps encourages employee loyalty, which further promotes the organization.
Creating a foundation for a diverse and inclusive workforce also has an impact on your customer base. How? Because it promotes a certain image of your organization, one that paints a caring and inclusive picture of it. Hiring diverse candidates is the first step towards building an inclusive work environment, which further impacts the bottom line of your organisation.
How to establish inclusive hiring practices?
1. Write inclusive job descriptions.
Job descriptions can turn off potential candidates right from the start because of the way they are worded. Gendered language, corporate jargon and long qualification lists have the potential to hurt diverse hiring efforts. Recruiters and HR professionals need to think about their post from the candidate's perspective to understand what impact can words have.
Here are a few tips to improve your job description post:
Differentiate between essential skills and nice-to-have ones;
Use neutral language. Eliminate gender-specific pronouns or words that can be exclusive of different races, genders and cultures
Avoid using performance-based descriptions.
2. Change the way you advertise your roles.
Another important step to improve your approach to inclusivity is to expand where you advertise. If you keep coming back to the same two or three job sites such as Linkedin or Indeed, you need to make a change. If you keep looking for candidates in the same places, you will only get the same type of candidate all over again.
Hiring bias can come into play if companies keep looking for candidates in the same places. If your sourcing strategies are too narrow, you will end up with the same type of candidate all over again. While is true that popular job boards can attract a great number of qualified talent, they are not the only available option.
Recruiters can continue using their preferred job sites, while also trying new platforms, such as university job boards or minority-specific groups. Advertising jobs on social media can also expand your audience. You can find candidates that normally wouldn't have encountered your job post.
3. Adapt your screening process.
Blind recruitment is one practice more and more HR professionals and recruiters are including in their hiring strategy nowadays. This means removing all personal credentials such as name, age or gender to ensure that each candidate gets the opportunity to be analysed solely based on their skillsets and experience.
Some recruiters may argue that they are not affected by bias when hiring, but research shows that unconscious bias affects everyone's decisions. This type of bias can be incredibly harmful to the company's inclusive policy, so blind recruitment can be the safest way to go.
4. Make inclusion and diversity part of your brand.
To attract diverse candidates you first need to make sure you've established a strong culture inside your company that promotes equality and inclusion. Managers should prioritise their employees and take time to know they are feeling valued and accepted. Similarly, employee differences should be celebrated, not eliminated to fit into a so-called company culture. Instead, build your company culture around those differences.
At WFH Recruitment, we are experts in tech and digital recruitment. With remote offices located in the UK and Europe, expanding in Asia and the USA we know a thing or two about the international marketplace and can help you secure talented candidates wherever you are located. Get in touch with us today to see what we can do for you.