The British Army recently rolled out a recruitment campaign that is quite controversial in some circles. Their theme was diversity, and the advertisements encouraged people of all genders, faiths, ethnicities and sexualities to consider joining the army. Critics have called this move too “politically correct,” but diversity is an important trend in many industries. This campaign reflects today’s more inclusive world, and your recruitment strategy can benefit from it.
What Is Diversity?
Diversity in the context of recruitment means more than tolerating every human being in the world and not discriminating against them. It means creating an environment that welcomes and encourages marginalised people to bring their valuable skills and perspective to the workforce.
What diversity looks like in practice varies significantly based on the region, industry and many other factors. For example, in manufacturing, diversity strategies may focus on ways to get more women involved or to determine why LGBTQIA individuals may feel unsafe applying for a job at the organisation.
How Recruitment Agencies Help Encourage Diversity
Diversity doesn’t happen on its own. You need to actively look for ways to encourage diversity among your applicants and in your retention strategies. This requires a different approach and new ways of thinking.
Look for new ways to reach your audience, as your current methods may focus too much on a single demographic. You may want to consider expanding the channels or look for unconventional opportunities to reach out to people. Partnering with businesses that serve diverse demographics or creating blog posts that serve as a valuable resource for a marginalised group are two ways to accomplish this.
Stereotypes have an impact in many ways and could influence how you recruit for manufacturing companies. Keep an open mind and don’t walk into the room with any preconceptions. If you don’t have personal experience with the challenges faced by that particular marginalised person, do some preliminary research before the conversation. You don’t want to give the impression that you only want to recruit them as a token representative of that group.
Focus on Attributes and Skills Over Personal Traits
When it comes down to it, you want the right combination of attributes and skills for the position that you’re recruiting for. If you’re looking for a material handler for a manufacturer, then you want someone who is capable of doing the job and is likely to stay with the company for the duration of the project.
You also want to consider the unique perspective offered by individuals who aren’t in the majority workforce demographic. They could provide needed information on how to encourage more diverse workforces or let you know ways that your recruitment strategy may not work for their group.
Create an all inclusive culture
Create policies and procedures that encourage a safe environment for everyone. Sexual harassment is a common reason that drives many women away from male-dominated industries, such as manufacturing. When the company culture and policies create an environment that discourages this kind of behaviour, then you can see the results in a more diverse workforce.
Diversity is more than just a buzzword thrown around by HR. It brings many benefits including competitive advantage and expansion of your potential talent pool so you can keep up with demand for high skilled labour.