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22nd September 2021

A diverse workforce benefits a company financially. As diverse teams have different beliefs, opinions, values, and life experiences, which are felt authentically by the consumers. Diverse companies are at least 35% more likely to generate above-average financial returns according to McKinsey Diversity. Let’s look at the key factors to drive a more diverse workforce.

What Is A Diverse Workforce? 

Diversity in the workplace is growing and needs to be included in your brand’s business plans as workplace diversity leads to better decision-making. Diversity is no longer a conversation around age, gender, and race, a diverse workplace demands a wider range of people at all levels of a business to add value. A demographically diverse team still needs different skills and opinions to add to a company. 

How To Recruit BAME Community

Wording 

Before any company advertises a job role, they will need to create a job specification for potential applicants to get an understanding of the role they are applying for which includes a brief overview of the company. This is the first point of contact a company has with a potential employee. Yet is where many companies go wrong. 

When writing job adverts avoid certain words, Textio have discovered words such as “shareholder” and “stakeholder” deter people of colour, for reasons that are not fully understood. Be aware that there are words that are geared towards a more specific demographic rather than experience level. The job specification/advert should focus on experience and potential.

Initial Recruitment Advertising 

Once candidates feel they can connect with application the job specifications they will start to apply for the job advertised. But if it does not embrace ethnic minority groups, there will not be the diverse group of applicants you are looking for. 

Before interviewing applicants, the company must look at the management/interview panel, and ask is it diverse? If the answer is no, your brand should consider bringing in an external company to get a fresh perspective. 

Outreach

To recruit ethnic minorities your brand will need to proactively reach out. 

What channels is the company using to advertise job roles? As directly finding targeted groups will be more efficient in reaching the demographic you wish to apply. Once the company has found a way to communicate with BAME groups they should aim to connect with more diverse talent. Relying on the same sources can result in a similar demographic of applicants so mix up the ways in which your brand recruits. To show ethnic minorities you value their diversity make time to reach out in the community. Once your brand starts to recruit ethnic minorities you will need to continue to provide opportunities company wide. According to the McGregor-Smith Review into race in the workplace, only 6 percent of top management positions are held by people from a BAME background.

Blind Recruitment 

So now your company has a diverse pool of applicants it now needs to shortlist them for interview. Blind recruitment hides information such as age, race, and gender to remove unconscious biases. It allows the applications to focus on the attributes that do matter in the recruitment process like emotional intelligence and resilience. By using blind recruitment AI systems your company can look at the suitability of a candidate regardless of their background. 

The use of hypothetical questions focuses on potential rather than experience. As experience opportunities are typically less available within the BAME community, asking hypothetical questions removes further barriers. 

Review 

If applicants are unable to identify with a company, they are less likely to apply. Regularly review your applications to see what demographic isn’t applying. Use the findings of your reviews to understand what the company can do better to encourage the group to apply.

According to Glassdoor, 67% of active and passive job seekers say that when evaluating companies and job offers, it is important to them that the company has a diverse workforce. It’s particularly important to minority groups – the survey found that 72% of women consider workforce diversity important (versus 62% of men), while 89% of black respondents, 80% of Asians, 70% of Latinos, and 65% of military veterans, said it was important to them. What’s more, a significant majority of white respondents say workforce diversity is important.

What Can Your Brand Do To Encourage More BAME Applicants?

Now you have a better understanding of steps to make recruitment more inclusive we can understand the challenges in BAME recruitment. One of the things to consider if you are looking to specifically hire BAME candidates is the perceptions of certain types of work. The negative stigma that is carried towards certain professions within communities often creates a barrier in recruitment. 

For example, there is a low BAME employment rate within the Police force. We have found many ethnic minorities have a poor relationship with police and therefore have a negative association. Changing the perceptions of the sector and the jobs within removes the stigma groups associate with. Our team worked alongside Hampshire Constabulary to support their BAME recruitment drive. Our campaigns utilised face-to-face events which allowed potential applicants to ask direct questions to overcome barriers.

To remove stigmas around a sector or job role your company needs to take the time to understand the issues embedded to break them down and improve perceptions.

If BAME talent is fully utilised, the economy could receive a £24 billion boost. – The McGregor-Smith Review

How Can I Do Better?

Commitment is needed to ensure an authentically diverse working environment, continual work needs to be carried out and this must be implemented throughout the company.

Set measurable realistic goals that keep your brand accountable.

Focus on career development for all members of your team and ensure the BAME employees aren’t left behind. Investing in talent will benefit your company long term. 

Provide training on racial bias. Racial bias is something that can be present in even those who genuinely believe in the importance of equality and do not realise they have a bias. Raising awareness of racial bias through training helps to remove unconscious biases within a company. Organisations must be willing to invest in long-term training to drive a diverse workforce effectively. 

Use your position of power to make positive changes!

Our Team Of Multicultural Specialists Can Help 

Our dedicated team of ethnic marketing experts is ready to help you, contact us to find out how we can help you recruit a diverse workforce. Call us on 02380 634283 or complete our contact form.