6 Steps That Every HR Professional Needs to Take to Hire More Diverse Candidates

Posted by Kelly Barcelos on Apr 14, 2021 9:52:25 AM
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Diversity hiring is a term we hear many HR professionals talk about nowadays. Every big company is now striving to be known for its diverse workforce that champions gender equality. Business leaders worldwide are actively trying to improve the representation of women in corporates. And HR professionals can play a significant role in this pursuit.

What is Diversity Hiring?
Diversity hiring refers to a recruitment process based on merit and free from any bias of gender, age, race, religion, and sexual orientation of the candidates. It means that any personality trait that does not relate to a candidate’s ability to perform well in a job should not influence the decision to hire or reject a job applicant.

Research has shown that 78% of talent professionals say that diversity hiring is one of their top
priorities. And reducing gender disparity is the number one goal they are trying to achieve. Note that diversity recruitment does not mean hiring women for the sake of increasing workplace heterogeneity. The objective is to identify and eliminate the potential biases that may influence the selection of female candidates.

HR professionals can do a lot to help corporates attain better gender parity in offices. Below, we have put together the steps to hire more diverse candidates that HR professionals can use.


A Step-by-Step Guide for Diversity Hiring

Study the Diversity in Your Current Hiring Process
Conduct an audit and analyze your hiring data to identify the areas of improvement needed. The analysis will give you an accurate picture of where you stand and help you devise a roadmap for improving divergent hiring in your workplace.

  1. Choose one Metric for Improvement to Begin With
    Take baby steps by choosing one metric to improve at a time. For example, if you see that the number of women in analyst roles is particularly low. Then set a target of improving gender equality in analyst roles by 10% in 12 months. Focus on that until achieved.
Use Sources that Offer a Heterogeneous Pool of Candidates
Not being able to source applications from female candidates could be the root cause of poor diversity in your recruiting process. Here are some things you can do to rectify this problem –

  •  Re-write your job postings with women candidates in mind. Avoid using words that may dissuade female candidates from applying.
  • Showcase the existing diversity in your workplace. Check your company website and social media content, such as pictures and videos, to see if it reflects gender equality.
  • If your organization offers some flexibility in working hours or options for working from home – make sure you highlight that in job postings and social media.
  • Encourage referrals from your existing female employees.
  1. Improve diversity at Screening Levels
  2. Your candidate screening parameters may eliminate women candidates or candidates from minority sections of the society without knowing it. Here are some tips to improve your screening diversity –
  •   Conduct a pre-hire personality assessment and screen candidates as per their personality score. Personality scores do not have any link to the candidate’s gender or community.
  • Use a technique called ‘blind hiring. In this method, candidate details such as names, schools, addresses are removed to anonymize the candidate. Blind hiring reduces the chances of unconscious bias.
  1. Use Shortlisting Techniques That Help in Increasing Diversity
  2. Your techniques for shortlisting candidates may also be the reason for low diversity in your hiring process. Try the following techniques to improve diversity hiring in your candidate shortlisting –
  • Research shows that if a solitary woman candidate is left on the final shortlist, they have virtually no chances of being hired. On the other hand, if two women are on the final shortlist, the chances of a woman being hired increase manifold. This phenomenon is known as the “two-in-the-pool” effect.
  • Automate your candidate shortlisting by using AI-based candidate shortlisting software. Using software to shortlist candidates instead of doing it manually can reduce biases.
  1. Reevaluate your Recruitment Process As Per Your Goal
  2. Revisit the goal you had set in Step 2 to analyze the improvement you have made in your diversity hiring. Analyze the hiring strategies that you used and determine which were the most effective for you. If you have successfully achieved the goal you set, then set a new goal for improving your diversity hiring and start again.

Gender parity cannot be achieved overnight. But, making slow and steady progress is essential to reduce the disparity. Implementing these initiatives can help business leaders devise a recruitment strategy that gives equal opportunity to all genders.

Author Bio: Kelly Barcelos is a progressive digital marketing manager for Jobsoid – Applicant Tracking System. She is responsible for leading the content and social media teams at work. Her expertise and experience in the field of HR enable her to create value-driven content for her readers – both on Jobsoid’s blog and other guest blogs where she publishes content regularly.

Topics: Diversity & Inclusion, Workplace Culture, recruitment

VERCIDA Group is a global inclusion consultancy and talent attraction organisation. We specialise in diversity onboarding, leadership development programmes, and creating inclusive work cultures. VERCIDA group consists of VERCIDA.com and VERCIDA Consulting

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