How to Source Underrepresented Talent by Staying Committed to Diversity and Inclusion
How to Source Underrepresented Talent by Staying Committed to Diversity and Inclusion
Kishor Venkatesh R

Content Developer

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How to Source Underrepresented Talent by Staying Committed to Diversity and Inclusion

09 Jun 2022

Enterprises need to thrive in an increasingly demanding climate by adopting diversity as a way of life. The benefits of having a diverse talent include a high level of creativity, performance, and innovation, which boost the company’s bottomline. 

As per research, companies with a diverse workforce are happier, more engaged with their work, and less likely to leave. One of the ways candidates determine if they have followed up on your diversity claims or not is by looking through the company roster for a diverse workforce. 

Workforce planning teams must be aware that they also look for diverse makeup among the company leaders. 

Success in diversity does not occur in a vacuum. It begins with a successful recruiting strategy and inclusion forthwith. But you will not have a diverse employee base unless you have a diverse candidate pool. What can workforce planning do to identify underrepresented talent to fulfill their company’s diversity needs? 

Establish a Company Policy and Know Where Talent Congregates 

Inclusiveness is the bedrock of diversity in your recruiting. Offering a policy of flexible work schedules and allowing employees to take time off to celebrate different religious holidays or participate in cultural events in your area is a good start. 

Take inputs from employees who are members of the demographics you target to learn what’s essential to their communities. Creating a presence for your organization in places where underserved groups congregate can help source great untapped talent. 

Partner with local universities and colleges to find a pool of potential employees from different minority groups and create relationships with associations in your industry catering to historically marginalized members. 

Additionally, job boards dedicated to diversity are an excellent place to advertise your open positions and spread the word about your intention to hire members of the underrepresented communities. 

Create an Effective Pipeline to Bring Untapped Employees 

Just as workforce planning teams can take your organization to places where there are historically underrepresented groups, they can use recruitment strategies to bring candidates to you. An active internship and scholarships can target the groups you want to recruit and nurture relationships with accomplished students from the underrepresented communities. 

Targeting accomplished and skilled students can help your company become a top choice to seek employment or an internship. They would tell people in their communities about your company and make referrals to their friends and family members. 

Use Inclusive Language That Resonates 

The language that workforce planning teams use to craft job postings can pique candidates’ interests or drive them away. As per research, male candidates are 27% more likely to apply for jobs than female candidates. So job adverts need a tweak to solicit a response from female candidates. 

Workforce planning teams must adjust their language to appeal to women psychologically. Some words like ambitious, competitive, and confident are typically considered more masculine. You can sound feminine by using terms like honest, loyal, and cooperative. 

Enable Growth-Focused Networks 

While employers have typically viewed networks as support mechanisms for employees and have taken an ad-hoc approach, the resulting networks often lack diversity in the role, skill, level, and experience. There is usually a limited involvement of the senior leadership. 

Growth-focused networks are intentional and self-sustaining, providing an array of diverse individuals in role, skills, level, and experience, offering exposure to senior leaders who are positioned to support growth and advancement. When underrepresented talent has diverse networks, the organization wins. 

When workforce planning teams create networking programs for underrepresented talent, they are two times more likely to improve organizational inclusion and 1.3 times more likely to report effectiveness at increasing diverse employee engagement. 

Workforce planning teams must –  

  • Help all employees understand how networking will enable better diversity and inclusion for underrepresented talent. 
  • Authorize underrepresented talent to network and teach the leadership team to build and manage networks to help the talent perform, develop, and advance. 
  • Create accountability for networking across underrepresented talent and leadership teams. 

Redesign Talent Processes to Mitigate Bias 

Organizations often rely on techniques like raising awareness and training on unconscious bias, hoping to mitigate bias, but they less often redesign processes to create opportunities for underrepresented talent. 

Workforce planning seldom uses redesign processes for bias mitigation because DEI does not own talent processes and requires a significant change effort. However, it can be effective. 

Workforce planning must embed inclusion and provide fair consideration for the underrepresented talent for advancement and challenge management on need-to-have requirements. 

When workforce planning uses AI-enabled talent intelligence, employers can expand labor market opportunities to consider adjacent and non-traditional talent pools. They must explore job design to accommodate diverse talent with varying needs and preferences and rethink how performance is evaluated. 

Moreover, they must change internal hiring methods to source internal candidates. 

Screen Candidates Using Technology and Think Beyond Traditional Degrees 

Technology can eliminate bias throughout the recruitment process. AI-based talent intelligence platform can make screening fair. Talent intelligence can detect potential bias, remove the human element that causes it, and evaluate the market based on specific criteria. 

It can shortlist candidates based on skills and location, thus eliminating personal opinions from these screenings, causing discrimination or compliance issues. Not every good engineer has an engineering degree from a four-year college, which is the same for designers, product managers, and others. 

Talent intelligence can pick candidates that have built their skills or received certifications in non-traditional learning environments. 

Draup’s talent intelligence platform enhances workforce planning efforts, enables analysis of existing skills against future needs, and assists in cost-effective workforce planning. Its Diversity Navigator can help workforce planning teams avoid common diversity pitfalls and plan career paths of the underrepresented and achieve their diversity and inclusion goals.

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