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Inclusive Recruitment

Intro and Background to Inclusive Recruitment

The most critical asset that every business has is the people working for it. To borrow a famous expression "Behind every successful business is a team of dedicated, hardworking people". Smart leaders understand this and invest a lot of time and money into their recruitment processes. As numerous resources indicate, hiring the wrong employee for a position in your business can cost your organization up to five times that employee's salary.

However, while it is essential to hire the right individual for a position in your organization, it is even more important to put together the right team. For the team to function effectively and sustainably, it has to be a diverse and representative group.

Diversity and representation within a team is a core feature of every successful team. According to several McKinsey and Boston Consulting Group studies all report that diverse teams and organizations are more profitable than their homogeneous competitors. This increase in profits is reportedly due to the increased level of creativity, innovation, and problem-solving. It is also due to higher employee retention because they are happier, more confident, and better supported.

Because of this well-documented impact on the bottom line, a lot of organizations are investing heavily in diversifying their workforces and putting in place Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) policies and protocols to ensure the workplace remains competitive, innovative and productive. The emphasis of the effective DEI program needs to be around the teams and not individuals, as a single person by notion is not diverse.

Diversity can only occur on the level of a team or an organization. To achieve its diversity goals, a company has to start hiring and recruiting inclusively. We have attempted to define the notion of inclusive recruitment, and we recommend that the organizations start hiring with DEI in mind to achieve their business goals.

What is Inclusive Recruitment?
Inclusive recruitment refers to the process of engaging and hiring a diverse group of individuals coming from different backgrounds, education, experience, and life journeys. Inclusive recruitment is not merely about gender and race or any other observable difference. It is about all the intersectional elements that come together to make the fabric of our communities.

To achieve an inclusive recruitment strategy, the company needs to shift its priorities. While things like work experience and education are essential, it is also important for the organization to value unique experiences, teachable moments, and belief systems. By bringing together all these people from all these different backgrounds and cultures, an organization can have enough diversity in opinion to foster creativity and innovation within the organization.

Also, the workforce's diversity would force everyone out of their comfort zone and thus lead to a lot of personal growth and improvement while also encouraging the kind of out of the box thinking that is necessary for critical problem-solving. Below are some of the benefits of inclusive recruitment in the workplace.

Benefits of Inclusive Hiring Policies at your workplace

It would be a mistake to pursue inclusive recruitment policies and even create a DEI strategy simply because of compliance and the regulations. This is because there are many intrinsic benefits to diversifying your organization's workforce beyond just meeting the compliance and corporate social responsibility obligations. Below are some of these inherent benefits mentioned above.

1. Higher ability to attract talent
All the best workers want to work for the best organizations. The best organizations are the ones with a culture of acceptance and inclusion for all its employees and stakeholders. Any organization that chooses to change to an inclusive recruitment policy will give itself an advantage over its competitors in the race to hire the best and brightest employees in the industry.

2. Higher ability to retain talent
Related to the point above, it is also advisable for organizations that utilize inclusive recruitment in their hiring policy to retain their talent. Having the right people in place means a lower need to engage in replacement tactics within the workforce. A higher degree of retention is one the best ways to save the money, boost the morale and plan for the future with more certainty.

3. Representative employee base
In the modern-day, an organization's employees should mirror the community that the organization works in. This approach will make it easier for customers to relate to the organization in question if their interactions with the employees are more personal, authentic and memorable. Through sharing some common traits with the client, your employees can help create a certain feeling of belonging for your customers.

Furthermore, a fair representation of the community among an organization's employees makes it easier for the company to understand its target audience needs and wants. As a result, a company will be better positioned to produce more intuitive and useful products and services for their customers.

4. A more supportive work environment
Inclusive recruitment is a vital part of an organization's Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion policy. Equity in talent management refers to a tailored case-by-case approach to employee management, where everyone gets what they need to be comfortable and do their jobs effectively. So instead of a one size fits all approach, the organization is expected to engage with the unique needs of the individual members to bridge the gaps between them to make it easier for them to work together.

This approach translates into a more supportive environment for the employees where they feel seen and valued as individual members in a team and not just a part of a collective.

5. Higher level of creativity and innovation
Inclusive recruitment will inevitably foster a culture of creativity and innovation within an organization when it is done right. Putting your employees in rooms and teams with people from different backgrounds and walks of life encourages them to consider other opinions other than their own or those like them, thus putting them out of their comfort zone. This constant nudging out of their comfort zones will push your employees to think out of the box and design intersectional solutions that work for more than those like them. Inclusivity training is strongly suggested when you have a diverse team to avoid an adverse effect of your DEI efforts.

Those are some of the most essential benefits of inclusive recruitment in an organization. However, while the advantages are apparent, they can only be realized if inclusive recruitment and, indeed, the DEI policy is executed right. There is a big difference between inclusive recruitment and tokenism, also known as symbolic recruitment or a diversity hire. We have compiled a few rules and guidelines that we at MaverickHR believe you could use to ensure that your organization can have an effective inclusive recruitment policy.

Guidelines for Inclusive Recruitment

1. Hire the right team of Recruiters
It is essential that you strategically partner with the right recruiter to achieve your inclusive recruitment goals. You need to understand your recruiter's definition of diversity and inclusion and make sure that it is similar to yours. Look at their record of previous placements to evaluate whether they will help you achieve your DEI targets with their inclusive recruitment strategy. For internal recruitment, developing your internal recruiters on the issues of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion will result in much-improved hiring on their part in the future. A recruiter that is unaware of their unconscious biases or unwilling to recognize the tremendous value of DEI will produce sub-optimal results and is unlikely to build your dream team.

2. Recruit Far and Wide
One of the main ways of making sure that your organization has an inclusive recruitment environment is to widen your search for new employees, especially where you go to recruit your potential hires. Sometimes the lack of inclusion in an organization isn't due to an exclusive culture within the organization but instead because they go to one place to recruit new employees. That place only has one demographic. This often happens with organizations that only recruit out of one or two universities. Diversify your sourcing methods and platforms, and that will diversify the recruits as well.

3. Educate your team
While you embark on this journey to recruit a more diverse group of new hires, it is important to make sure that all your team members are on the same page. Help them understand why diversity is a virtue in the workplace and why they must all play their parts to make the workplace more inclusive. Consider formal DEI training for your team to ensure the success of your initiatives. The existing team members mustn't alienate the new members, as well as the newly promoted culture of inclusion that the organization is deliberately trying to curate.

4. Use blind recruitment strategies
Just like universities use need-blind application processes during their admissions processes to offset any biases they might have towards or against certain types of students; employers can also deploy their own blind recruitment strategy to mitigate their own inherent human biases that lead to some candidates missing out because they do not fit the discriminatory profiles that the employers and recruiters would typically come up with, whether deliberately or not.

That is the summary of the policy of inclusive recruitment. We at MaverickHR hope you find this information useful as you go out and recruit new employees.

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