Diversity in the workplace is more than just a fad. It’s a concept that smart business owners are encouraging for a number of reasons, such as increased career opportunities for their employees and a better business reputation. Diversity is great for a business’ public image, of course, but it also benefits businesses that want to embrace a variety of viewpoints. Any business that’s committed to diversity is a business that’s committed to innovation. After all, having a diverse team from all different walks of life and experiences can really foster creative solutions to problems that homogenius environments don’t have the perspective necessary to address. If you want to get to the top of your industry, it only makes sense that you’d want to work with people who can bring you the solutions that others are might overlook.
How to improve diversity in the workplace
Improving diversity in the workplace isn’t something you can do with a quick memo or through an impassioned speech. Instead, you’ll have to take concrete steps in order to change the way your workplace functions. Below are a handful of methods that you can use not only to make your workforce more diverse, but impact and enhance the very way that it operates.
Utilize new recruiting avenues
If you notice that everyone you hire comes from the same background, the way that you’re recruiting may be at fault. Every form of recruitment has its own implicit biases, so take some time to look at different ways you might attract different groups of people. These strategies might range from offering referral bonuses to your existing employees to attending job fairs at local universities, but these new avenues will absolutely bring a new set of applicants to your door. Make sure to include social media in your job postings, as this will give you access to a far greater number of potential hires from different backgrounds than other more traditional avenues. Over 3 billion people use some form of social media each month so this is an easy step if you are looking to attract a diverse set of applicants.
Adapt company culture
Great companies have great cultures. If you want to ensure that your company is able to embrace a more diverse workforce, you’ve got to change the way you operate internally. This means not only changing things like the way your company celebrates success, but also changing the way your company thinks. Your culture needs to be one that’s not afraid to go against the status quo and certainly one that will allow you to embrace the new ideas that greater diversity can bring to you. Companies with a strong cultural presence attract and retain better talent, period.
Have a diversity policy and communicate it regularly
If you’re not honest about the need for diversity in the workplace, your company’s not going to change. As such, it’s important to have both a firm diversity policy in place and to talk about it openly. Don’t just hide your policy in your training materials – open a dialog and make sure that it’s a priority. This has the dual benefits of not only helping your current employees to know where you stand but to help more people feel at home when working for you. Being open and honest about your desire for more diversity will help to reinforce what you’re doing and allow others to understand why you’re making the choices that you are making.
“The key to success is understanding and accepting the differences on a multicultural team, and then using them to enhance the way the team analyzes situations and makes decisions.”
-Kelley Holland, How Diversity Makes a Team Click
Spread diversity company-wide
This is a hard one for many businesses because spreading diversity in the workplace isn’t always as intentional as it should be. It’s not enough to have one diverse group in your organization, or to only look at diversity insofar as one area of the business is concerned. Every area of your company needs to be diverse, from your IT specialists to your front-line customer service professionals. Your business needs to reflect the diversity of your community and it cannot do that if your commitment to diversity doesn’t stretch across the board. Make sure to look at the bigger picture instead of just concentrating on raw numbers, especially if you’re looking to ensure that your company is presenting a better face to the public.
Far too many hires are made because someone trusts his or her gut, or because someone has a good feeling about a person because of an interest or affiliation. In truth, hiring subjectively often means that you’re giving voice to biases that you may not even realize that you have. Make sure that you’re putting the needs of the job first and that you’re double-checking your own objectivity. Get more people from more diverse backgrounds involved in the hiring process whenever possible. This will give you a better chance to spot your own biases and to make more effective hiring decisions.
Improving your business with PayTech
Whether you are looking to create more diversity in the workplace or simply to improve your operations, PayTech can help you. We offer a variety of different HR support options, ranging from payroll processing to HR outsourcing. When you’re ready to learn more, make sure to contact us to learn more about our services and pricing packages.