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      Why It’s Important to Have a Diversity Recruitment Strategy

      Employee values have taken precedence in today’s job search. A high salary and ample benefits are no longer enough to attract top candidates to a company. Now, a business needs to put people first not only through products and services but also through a diverse workplace.

      In fact, according to a 2020 survey by Glassdoor, 76 percent of job seekers report a diverse workforce is important when evaluating a company. The same survey found 32 percent of job seekers won’t even apply for a job at a company with a lack of diversity. The emphasis on inclusion and diversity within the workforce has prompted many businesses to develop a diversity recruitment strategy. 

      What Is a Diversity Recruitment Strategy?

      A diversity recruitment strategy sets action items and goals around inclusive recruitment while carefully ensuring procedures are in place to reduce hiring biases around age, race, gender, and other characteristics. The ultimate goal is to remove roadblocks from the hiring process that may be hindering the development of a diverse workforce. 

      A diverse recruitment strategy is important for attracting the best candidates and it makes a difference to the company’s overall success. According to a survey by PwC, of the CEOs whose companies had a diversity and inclusiveness strategy, 85 percent said a diverse workforce improved their bottom line. BCG also reported on the benefits of business inclusivity in a recent study. Their study found that companies with above-average management team diversity reported 19 percent higher innovation revenue than the companies with below-average management team diversity. 

      In a competitive job market, companies have to know how to compete, and, in many instances, diversity is one company area that is lacking. Appeal to potential employees and boost company innovation by establishing a well-crafted diversity recruitment strategy for your business.

      How to Create a Diversity Recruitment Strategy

      The process of implementing diversity recruitment takes research, planning, and effective execution. It might be a lot of work to initially establish your diversity recruitment strategy, but in the end, it’ll be well worth the effort. Below are three actions you can take to create your diversity recruitment strategy and improve your hiring process. 

      1. Identify Roadblocks

      The first step in developing a diversity recruitment strategy is to identify current roadblocks. Audit job listings, candidate sourcing locations, and employee biases. A lot of job descriptions unknowingly exclude many promising candidates. Review job descriptions and posting and check for things like gender-neutral language and emphasizing results over skillset. As you review the hiring process, you should also assess candidate sourcing. If you’re seeing the same type of candidates from your recruitment sources, it’s time to look for other outlets, such as encouraging diverse employees to refer candidates and targeting alternative candidate profiles.

      Finally, help the hiring staff recognize hiring biases through diversity training. Unconscious bias workshops, as well as interview best practices, are two training sessions that will help employees look at the hiring process from a different perspective. 

      2. Create Accountability

      After the roadblocks have been assessed and employee understanding of diversity has been expanded, it’s time to set accountability. People need to be held accountable for achieving diversity recruitment goals. It’s important to recognize, however, that successful diversity recruitment is a team effort. Each person needs to contribute to the diversity and inclusivity effort. Accountability can be established by setting clear goals, adding inclusion and diversity standards to company values, and establishing ongoing diversity training. 

      3. Hire a DEI Officer

      A diversity, equity, and inclusion officer serves two important purposes for the company. First, the DEI officer will help establish and execute an effective diversity recruitment strategy. If you’re starting a diversity effort from scratch or have tried unsuccessfully to diversify in the past, a DEI officer is an excellent leader for the new initiative. A DEI officer is also important for ensuring the satisfaction of current employees through inclusive programs that highlight company diversity values. 

      The second important purpose of a DEI officer is to show potential employees that your company is consciously making an effort to be more diverse and inclusive. When looking at a prospective company, candidates want to see commitment to a diverse and inclusive workforce. Diverse teams are a good start, but they don’t necessarily mean you’re dedicated to promoting diversity. A DEI officer shows candidates the company has dedicated specific resources to furthering inclusive goals and increasing diversity awareness.  

      Conclusion

      Changing recruitment methods to reflect diversity standards is a necessary part of business evolution. By implementing essential hiring changes to highlight diversity, you’ll attract new promising talent and ultimately improve your company’s innovation standards.  

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      Top Executive Search Firm | Diversity Recruiting | Cowen Partners

      Our hands-on executive recruiters have experience working with private, public, pre-IPO, and non-profit organizations. Clients are typically $50 million in revenue to Fortune 1000’s or have assets between $500 million to $15 billion. Successful placements span the entire C-Suite – CEOChief Operating OfficerChief Financial Officer, and include vice presidentgeneral counsel, and other director-level leadership roles.

      Read more of our industry-leading diversity recruiting resources to see why Cowen Partners is a leading diversity and inclusion executive search firm in New York City, Chicago, Seattle, Dallas, Los Angeles, and beyond:

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