In a country that is more diverse than ever before — and will only become more so over time — it’s no surprise that companies are placing an increased importance on diversity and inclusion efforts. After all, not only do diverse companies tend to perform better financially and create more innovative solutions; creating a more diverse workplace is just the right thing to do.
But even after you’ve decided that you’d like to focus on creating a workplace that is more welcoming and less homogenous, there’s no easy solution. Between hurdles like unconscious bias, pipeline issues, a need to fill open recs as quickly as possible and limited (or zero) budget to spend on diversity and inclusion initiatives, many talent acquisition and HR professionals find themselves not knowing where to start.
If that’s a feeling you can relate to, it’s time to check out Glassdoor’s Diversity & Inclusion checklist. In this resource, we’ve come up with a handful of concrete actions that your company can take to build a more diverse and inclusive environment. Below, we’ve highlighted a few of the top tips — read on to learn more, and don’t forget to download the full checklist for more info!
Tip #1: Establish Benchmarks
Before you make plans for the future, you need to figure out where you stand at present. Look at your employee population demographics, and compare it to similar companies. Where do you lag? Where do you excel? Then, look at your candidate pool, hiring, promotion and turnover demographics to identify problem or opportunity areas. Once you’ve looked at both your competitors’ data and your own, you can set realistic goals for improvement.
[Related: How I Lead a Diverse Team at Octagon]
Tip #2: Get Executive Buy-In
Very few companies ever improve their diversity without support from the top. Make a compelling business case to senior leadership for investing in diversity and inclusion, and call upon leaders to serve as role models in exhibiting inclusive behaviors, managing their own unconscious bias and enthusiastically supporting employees from non-traditional backgrounds.
Tip #3: Expand Your Hiring Pool
If you want to bring in a more diverse pool of candidates, you can’t continue with the same-old hiring practices as before. Try posting job listings in social media groups for diverse professionals, partnering with diversity organizations, expanding your college recruiting efforts to more diverse schools or bringing in an outside expert to consult. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box!
Tip #4: Be Transparent
If there’s one way to hold yourself accountable for your goals, it’s sharing them with a group. Disseminate info internally about your company’s current diversity data as well as your goals for the future, and hold dialogues with current employees to see how they can help you in your efforts. Some companies even go so far as to publish their diversity data externally — Facebook, Salesforce, Uber and more have all created public-facing reports of their demographic info.
Improving diversity and creating a more inclusive workplace is certainly no easy feat, but don’t let that discourage you. Even small actions taken right now will help you gain momentum and improve over time. And once you start to experience the benefits of a more diverse and inclusive company, you’ll likely see it was worth the investment.