January 13, 2022 Innovation Team

Hiring for Diversity: 3 Tips for Creating an Inclusive Workforce


Guest Author: Lance Cody-Valdez

Hiring for diversity is a priority for many organizations. You are probably already aware of the advantages of creating a diverse workforce – from a broadened talent pool to increased financial performance. But, why is diversity hiring so important, and how can organizations attract and retain qualified candidates? Here are three ways you can learn how to create a diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace. 

1.  Assess Your Talent Acquisition Strategy

An effective talent acquisition strategy positions organizations to match the demands of the market by hiring for growth and longevity. It has many variables including intentionally creating a culture of inclusivity which is an important aspect of successfully building an engaged and diverse team. Designing a strategic company talent acquisition plan that includes hiring for innovation by using a blend of full-time and project resources is critical to an organization’s growth.

For instance, there are a number of benefits to recruiting freelancers when it comes to hiring for diversity. By using an online, inclusive recruiting agency such as Hire Runner, you can attract qualified freelancers in your community which reduces organizational costs like employee benefits, supports your local economy, and connects you to skilled candidates from different backgrounds. Unlike larger recruiting agencies, you’ll have more control over the hiring process while increasing the diversity of your hiring pool.

Successful leaders know that your talent acquisition strategy rules your growth strategy. Are you spending time assessing the qualities you’re looking for to build a diverse team?

2. Write Inclusive Job Postings

Job postings help you find the best candidates to suit your business needs. However, postings with biased wording can signal a subtle message to the prospective candidate which may impact the likelihood of them applying. It’s best to use neutral language in your job postings and avoid words with hidden bias that could drive away women, veterans, and other minority applicants. For example, avoid using words like “energetic”, “rockstar”, “able-bodied”, “guru”, “cultural fit”, “digital native”, and “recent college graduate” in job postings. 

For additional tips, check out Jennifer Ernst Beaudry of Lattice’s article on how to create inclusive job postings. 

3. Create an Accessible Workplace

A diverse and successful workplace is one that employs candidates regardless of age, race, gender, nationality, religion, sexual orientation, and physical or mental ability. To build an inclusive workforce for those with physical, mental, or intellectual disabilities, you’ll need to focus on workplace accessibility. Here are some ways to create a more accessible workplace for employees of different abilities:

  • Provide accommodations such as reserved parking spaces, communication supports, and environmental supports (e.g. accessible bathrooms, wheelchair ramps, and ergonomic workstations).
  • Ensure all business technologies are accessible, including websites, intranets, HR systems, and training tools.
  • Offer home-based work opportunities and flexible schedules.
  • Caption training videos for those with hearing impairments.
  • Train your leaders, recruiters, and team members on diversity and inclusion.

In addition to using online job boards such as Hire Runner to diversify your hiring, the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) shares some tips for finding qualified candidates with disabilities. You can also post job openings at disability-related job fairs, independent living centers, and workforce employment centers. 

4. Support a Diverse Workforce

Diversity hiring and retention is strategic in today’s workforce planning and organizational success.  According to LinkedIn’s Global Recruiting Trends report, 78% of companies prioritize diversity to improve culture, and 62% of companies prioritize it to boost financial performance.

In addition to hiring for diversity, it’s important to support your diverse workforce by creating an inclusive space that is safe and fair for all employees regardless of age, race, religion, ability, gender, and culture. Organizations should also have anti-discrimination and anti-harassment policies visible and easily accessible. Your talent acquisition strategy should include recruiting a diverse set of leaders and considering the physical, intellectual, social, and spiritual needs of all employees. 

In order to retain and empower your diverse workforce, you’ll need to build an inclusive and equitable workplace and create a culture where employees support diversity and inclusion in their workplace behaviors. 

By continuously learning and prioritizing diversity and inclusivity, we can build and benefit from diverse workplaces. 

If you wish to implement Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) efforts in your organization, schedule a discovery call to learn how we can help you create a more diverse, equity, and inclusive workplace.