Diversity and Inclusion: 3 Best Practices for Transforming Your Company Culture
As talent acquisition professionals, we all know that diverse and inclusive workplaces drive innovative results.
Yet businesses across the United States struggle to build a workplace culture that fosters these principles, often failing to attract diverse talent due to inclusivity issues in the workplace.
According to findings of one recent survey, close to 57% of employees today think their company should be doing more to boost diversity.
For organizations looking to shape up their diversity and inclusion (D&I) programs and policies, the change will look challenging at first, but it’s going to be equally rewarding. Keep reading to look at a few diversity and inclusion best practices for HR leaders wanting to transform their company culture and achieve growth faster.
1. Assess the Shift in Global Understanding of D&I to Formulate an Effective Strategy
Organizations with more diverse cultures, gender, and ethnicity outperform those that don’t support diversity do anything to address such gaps. Diversity means much more than just gender diversity, ethnic diversity, and race for the new-age employee. Some of the other factors this term now encompasses include:
- Sexual orientation
- Religious affiliation
- Disability or Physical challenges
- Personality type
- Particular style of thinking
Employers and talent acquisition leaders are now placing greater significance on designing environments where various voices are heard and encouraged. This helps them promote inclusivity in the workplace and allows them to leverage the quality of their workforce to deliver better products and services.
However, one best practice here would be to remember that diversity can mean different things to different organizations.
For instance, a research study explains how in most parts of the world today, the main focus of D&I efforts is on promoting and hiring more women.
“The major reason for this is that women, who make up 50% of the population, represent a large, untapped (or under-tapped) resource, which companies will need in the future as Baby Boomers begin to retire,” the study further states.
Conversely, another research case study published on the World Economic Forum’s official website points out how some of the most disruptive, innovative, and prosperous urban centers in the world – Dubai, London, New York, and Singapore – have one thing in common. They are all international melting pots with a high concentration of immigrant workers.
Time and again, various research studies have depicted an immediate correlation between highly-skilled, diverse workforces and an increase in the level of innovation and the overall economic performance in such regions.
These two examples illustrate that every sector and organization looks at diversity differently. As a talent acquisition leader, you should continually assess the constant shifts in the global understanding of diversity and inclusion best practices and create a robust strategy for your company accordingly.
2. Try to Build an Environment that Keeps Inclusivity at Its Core
Once you’ve evaluated what other HR leaders across the globe are doing to promote diversity within their organizations and narrowed down certain best practices that will specifically cater to the unique needs of your workforce, now you’ve got to think about ways you can build an inclusive workplace environment that keeps inclusivity at its apex.
As a talent acquisition leader, you must create an inclusive culture within your company where every employee is encouraged to draw upon their backgrounds, perspectives, and experiences to advance business goals.
One excellent example of a company that has successfully achieved this with its D&I program would be healthcare service provider Johnson & Johnson.
Business leaders at the organization realized that to achieve global diversity and inclusivity, they needed culturally appropriate efforts launched, specifically keeping in mind the unique distinguishing characteristics of every region.
Since the company struggled to combine its diversity efforts in Europe and the United States, it conducted its first-ever live video conference on mutual perceptions, diversity, and respect. Clients and employees reported increased productivity, and over one hundred survey participants said the conference was the most valuable training they had ever experienced.
Another notable example of an organization realizing the scope and depth of inclusive people environments would be Deutsche Bank, a founding member and signatory of diverse characters in Spain, Luxembourg, and Germany.
The global finance leader now has a relatively gender-inclusive global workforce made up of roughly 42% female employees.
Eileen Taylor, Global Head of Diversity at Deutsche, says, “We are in 75 countries, and we hire the best talent in each locale. Diverse and inclusive teams and companies make better decisions.”
These examples make it clear that some of the top companies worldwide are now focusing their efforts on building a more inclusive and diverse workplace.
In one of its 2018 articles, SHRM.org highlights a few best practices HR leaders can follow to build a more diverse workforce. These include:
- Educate your leaders about what inclusivity truly means and what they can do to promote it
- Form an inclusion council that can advocate for inclusiveness in discussions with top executives when necessary
- Celebrate employee differences by arranging small events where everybody can come together often
- Listen to your employees by conducting regular town-hall-style meetings
- Hold more effective meetings by creating an inclusive mindset
- Communicate goals at frequent intervals and measure progress
Moving forward, HR leaders need to think about what areas of D&I their company is falling short on and make amends to improve continuously.
3. Have Solutions in Place to Monitor and Retain a Diverse Workforce
Lastly, talent acquisition leaders and employers must understand that D&I cannot be treated as a one-off’ initiative. It is, and will always be, an ongoing process that needs monitoring and amends as its employee count increases.
Your diversity and inclusion strategy needs to be nurtured at every stage to remain relevant and practical – from the moment you interview a potential employee for an open position to when you recruit and onboard them and place efforts toward retaining them.
One global case study published on Deloitte’s blog that interviewed six diversity and inclusion leaders from leading companies to identify the nature of “best” D&I practice in global companies found an increasing need for many sources of feedback and multiple inclusion initiatives.
This implies that instead of measuring employee turnover rates, HR leaders should measure granular information such as quarterly or yearly survey results, any changes noticed in return on investment (ROI) post-implementation, employee satisfaction scores, etc.
Use a talent dashboard that enables talent acquisition teams to gauge any progress made on the diversity and inclusion front.
The takeaway is that your company should have different solutions in place that can help HR leaders monitor and retain a talented and diverse workforce.
A few such solutions available today are:
- Global mentoring programs
- Employee resource groups
- Multicultural talent management
- Strategic partnership development
- e-Learning modules
To know more about diversity and inclusion best practices so you can build people-driven and result-oriented workplaces in the long run, get in touch with us at Recruiter.com.
We have the recruiters and hiring data technology you’ll need to build a diverse and inclusive workplace.
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