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The Importance of Diversity in the Workplace

The Importance of Diversity in the Workplace

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Diversity in the workplace is taking hold this year. While many experts project this as one of the major workplace trends for 2023, hiring authorities, recruiters, and talent acquisition specialists should evaluate and find ways to improve this aspect.

This matter goes beyond employer branding or a company’s public image. With job-seekers prioritizing diversity, equity, and inclusion as a decision-making element when evaluating offers, employers should see this as a primary aspect to attract and retain high performers and widen their talent pool.

What is diversity in the workplace? 

Diversity in the workplace mainly refers to an organizational philosophy in which companies intentionally conform their workforce of individuals with different characteristics such as gender, religion, race, age, ethnicity, sexual orientation, education, etc. The idea is to accept and include employees with all kinds of backgrounds and acknowledge their strengths and the potential value they can bring to your company.

Why is it important to have a diverse workforce?

Aside from the fact that this is a trend of interest for candidates –the more varied your workplace is, the more attractive your company will be– it has evolved into a credibility and productivity asset. Employees with different backgrounds will provide different opinions, skills, and experiences to approach and solve a wider range of problems.

Every person sees the world according to their background. For example, millennials and gen Zs are full of energy and fresh ideas for innovation. Still, veteran professionals have the experience and foresight when it comes to seeing through big, long-term projects. A variety of points of view is what makes the people in your workplace such a vital resource.

Benefits of diversity in the workplace

Having a variety of individuals in your office will provide perspective and versatility to the atmosphere. You’ll see results immediately after you start diversifying your workforce as well as experience advantages in the long run. Here are the benefits you’ll experience due to diversity in the workplace:

Improving engagement

As mentioned before, more and more candidates and employees embrace diversity, equity, and inclusivity. A workplace where different cultures, backgrounds, and opinions converge will make your employees feel more comfortable engaging with one another. If you encourage them to have confidence in themselves, you’ll inspire them to perform at their best. Put effort into and prioritize a culture that practices acceptance, and you’ll guarantee yourself a solid and loyal team. 

Giving new perspectives 

Suppose after weighing in on your team, you determine it has a flat vision. One of the best actions you can take to create a spark in team dynamics is to add people with different profiles to the ones you already have. This way, you’ll bring a fresh pair of eyes to evaluate your processes. Think of it as having your team split up strategically to retrieve more information and approach problems differently. 

Inspiring collaboration and mentorship

Innovation is another benefit of diversity in the workplace. Teams that share different work ethics and skill sets help round out a company’s growth potential. Matching strengths and areas for improvement also make great learning and team-building experiences. You’ll close your team’s skill gap and foster creativity by having people with different knowledge and working styles.

Growing your talent pool

Speaking about the recruitment process, companies that diversify their job boards by actively attracting more candidates with different backgrounds will have access to a broader talent pool. Not only because you’ll be open to a wider variety of profiles, but also, according to Glassdoor, 76% of candidates and workers set a diverse workforce as a key factor when evaluating job offers.

76% of employees and job seekers report a diverse workforce is an important factor when evaluating companies and job offers. 

Glassdoor

We’re witnessing one of the largest job markets ever. So there are many niches you can build a presence to extend your talent pool. For example, CNN reported that the millennial generation is one of the biggest and most diverse. Imagine the range of qualified professionals your company can attract by opening up your talent pipeline. 

Gaining better profits and productivity

Many companies aim to improve their productivity by automating their workplace. Of course, technology is one way to get the best out of your team, but you can experience similar benefits when having a diverse and skilled team. Several reports have shown that diversity improves a company’s performance at several levels, including executive boards and leadership roles.

How to promote diversity and inclusion in the workplace 

Diversifying your workforce gives your company a competitive edge in the market and helps to maintain workplace happiness. As this year takes off, building a diverse team should become one of your top priorities if you want to take your organization to the next level. 

In order to increase diversity in the workplace, here are a few actions you should take to redefine your hiring process and workforce.

Acknowledge your blind spots

It’s normal to have unconscious biases when it comes to working culture, but it’s up to you to acknowledge them and take action. It’s about speaking up to understand and solve them. Self-awareness is an essential aspect of improving diversity in the workplace. The more conscious decision-makers and hiring authorities are of their behaviors, the easier it will be for them to disrupt their settings when expanding a team. 

Keep inclusion as one of your hiring pillars

Employers have developed a higher interest in the significance of their role in providing dignified work. To fulfill this responsibility, they should take most of their efforts right from the recruitment process. Many people from disprivileged groups, like veterans and individuals with mobility challenges, struggle to find a job. Having workplace diversity in your agenda allows you to use it as an opportunity to grow your team and enhance the quality of life of the job-seekers who reach your company. 

Be clear about your standards and expectations

As with any other growth process, clear strategies and goals are needed to succeed. Make sure to perform a detailed evaluation of your company’s workplace. Start by analyzing your recruitment, retention, engagement, and promotion efforts; with the results of this evaluation, you’ll be able to improve your strategy and be entirely aware of your workplace atmosphere. 

Once you’ve studied the data, you can take these actions to improve your reputation as an employer: 

  • Implement and emphasize a diversity-driven hiring funnel.
  • Build a presence on diverse niche job boards
  • Include candidates from different sectors in your interview process.

If you’re just starting to act toward diversity in the workplace, set clear objectives and follow-up. The more you review the performance and inspire discussion about inclusion, the easier it is to keep your system and culture impartial and fair.

Contributed by Luis Arellano

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