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4 Simple Ways to Focus on Workplace Diversity in 2015

Posted by Patrick Ball on 2 Jan 2015

Recruiting is forecast to have an even more critical role in 2015, as a rebounding economy opens doors for job hoppers ready to make their next move. explains how to focus on workplace diversity in 2015

There’s plenty of talk about employer branding, solidifying mobile strategies and using social media to recruit, retain and engage talent. Not to mention the reports that more than 80 percent of job seekers are employed and looking for new jobs, and tech industry employers are expected to add headcount in the next year.

But, as the talent wars heat up, it’s important not to lose sight of your big picture objective – to assemble a top-notch workforce made up of talented individuals who work well as a team.

That’s where workplace diversity comes in. Research over the years has shown a positive correlation between more diversity and higher productivity, though a recent study out of MIT indicated job satisfaction is lower in more diverse offices. 

Here are a few strategies that will let you focus on workplace diversity without sacrificing company culture in 2015.

  1. Cast a Wide Net
    Studies have shown job-seekers are increasingly moving to mobile devices to look for new employment opportunities. Meanwhile, employers are ramping up their presence on social media – and not just on LinkedIn. With that in mind, it will be crucial to cast a wide net as you’re looking for new talent in 2015. Have your team identify a deep, diverse candidate pool using social media, specialty job sites, forums and professional networks.

  2. Establish Your Hiring Pyramid
    In a recent interview with the Wall Street Journal, VP of Human Resources Joanne Derr explained her holistic approach to talent evaluation. “I think of the hiring process as a pyramid, with tech skills at the base, communications skills in the middle and culture at the top,” said Derr. “Applicants need to have the right skills and competencies, now and for the future, or they don’t become candidates.”

    Find out How to Stop Hiring Jerks and Start Finding (and Hiring!) Your Perfect Fit 
  3. Tease Out Cultural Fit in the Interview Process
    Skills and competencies might get a candidate in the door, but if they’re not a cultural fit then they’re not going to be hired. The same way you’d ask a series of questions to identify core competencies and problem-solving skills during an interview, you should develop a list of questions aimed at determining whether the candidate fits your company culture.  

  1. Hire the Best People – Period
    The MIT study explains that more homogeneous offices tend to have greater “social capital,” which is defined as cooperation, trust and overall enjoyment of the workplace. But it only defines homogeny in terms of gender. But you can find homogeny within diverse workplaces if you hire people who share certain qualities and believe in the company’s mission and values. Focus on hiring the best people for your company and its culture and you’ll find that high social capital comes naturally to a workforce united by qualities like intelligence, kindness and drive.  

  2. Evolve Your Retention Strategies 
    The same forces thrusting recruiting into a more prominent role this year -- economic recovery, more employment opportunities, etc -- will elevate retention as a concern for employers looking to hold onto top talent in 2015. Resolve to connect with your workforce, prioritize employee engagement and get a pulse for why people like working for your organization -- and why they don't. When you do lose good employees, take the exit interview process seriously and use the responses to inform and evolve your retention strategies. 

    Learn more about Why You're Losing Good Employees 

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