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Diversity Hiring: 7 Effective Ways For Recruiting Diverse Employees

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Diversity hiring is the first step towards building a more inclusive and diverse workplace culture.

Anyone not living under a rock knows the importance of diversity and inclusion in every aspect of our lives. The same extends to our workplaces too.

To simply define diversity hiring is when companies design a hiring process that provides an equal opportunity for candidates of diverse sexual orientation, gender, race, and other minority groups to take part in the interview process and get recruited.

Not surprisingly, today’s millennials and Gen Z employees consider diversity and inclusion the main criteria for choosing to work at a company.

Thus, unless you are serious about making some practical changes that accommodate a diverse workforce, it will prove to be hard for you to attract and retain the industry’s top talents.

Additionally, workplace diversity and inclusion bring a plethora of benefits to the company—fresh ideas, new viewpoints, untapped potential, employee engagement- just to name a few.

7 Incredibly Useful Diversity Hiring Ideas

For any HR or hiring manager looking to diversify their workforce, the following useful tips will provide the crucial things you need to do.

1. Set Your Diversity Hiring Goals

Setting diversity hiring goals will make the process much easier to navigate.
Firstly, it will force you to evaluate what is your diversity hiring shortcomings.

Is there a lack of a particular minority in your workplace? Does your workforce consist of a single demographic? Do people of color rarely interview at your company? Going through such specific problems will point you to why your company is lacking on the diversity front.

Secondly, it will help prioritize and prepare for achieving your hiring goals. It can be in terms of resources, manpower, or tools.

Thirdly, it will help you keep track of the progress of your hiring goals. Thus, over time, you can look back and examine the measures that made the difference.

Finally, it will help you identify some critical patterns. Is the ratio of a single demographic getting selected after the interview process much higher and consistent? Recognizing and identifying problematic patterns are an essential part of addressing hiring biases.

2. Using AI In The Hiring Process

With the advent of AI and ML, many businesses are slowly incorporating these technologies into their workplaces. Including their recruiting and hiring practices. From incorporating AI into IT recruiting to streamlining the hiring process and making better use of data, the impact of these technologies on everything from human resources to sales is significant. This represents a departure from traditional methods of doing just about everything, introducing automated processes that efficiently handle vast amounts of data and expedite timelines across the organization.

Your traditional hiring process is most likely riddled with unconscious bias.

According to a study, minority job seekers who “whitened” their resumes were more than twice as likely to receive calls for interviews. Even in companies that claimed to “value diversity.”

But using technology to screen candidates’ resumes might prove to backfire, as this disastrous Amazon experiment shows. Interestingly, this failure comes from biased data sets. Thus, the machines also “learned” to bias.

It becomes vital that the screening process is a delicate balance of both humans and technology. That ensures that both parties keep each other in check to deliver a smooth diversity hiring process.

3. Redesign Your Employee Referral Program

The employee referral process may prove to be a vital setback in your diversity recruitment efforts. Research says people tend to refer to people like themselves. Thus, some recruiting managers believe that having an employee referral program is terrible for their diversity and inclusion initiatives. Yet, employee referrals are known for their quick, low cost, and effectiveness in hiring top candidates.

A few ways to make the employee referral process work to your advantage to achieve your diversity hiring goals. Here’s how:

  • Instead of simple referrals, ask for “diverse referrals.” Additionally, attach some bonus to the referee if the candidate gets selected.
  • Ask for “leads” instead of referrals (Pinterest’s brilliant tactic). It will allow employees to get outside of any existing unconscious bias.
  • Ask all employee minority groups to refer actively.
  • You can get referrals from people who are not your employees. Diversifying the network of getting referrals will also help in getting a diverse pool of qualified candidates.

4. Framing The Right Job Description

The job description is the first piece of contact that you have with a possible employee. Thus, don’t overlook its importance in driving the message of inclusivity.

Your entire diversity hiring process will become obsolete if the wording of the job description itself is wrong. People should be respected for who they recognize as, and that starts with how we address them.

Small things like the pronouns (he, she, her, him, they) are an essential part of a person’s identity. Ensure that you keep the following tips in mind while drafting a job description:

  • Any job description should use gender-neutral language. Amazingly, there’s an app that decodes whether your job ads have any unconscious bias attached to them.
  • To promote using the right pronouns, consider using tools like Alex.Alex helps you “catch insensitive, inconsiderate writing.”
  • Use simple, understandable, and concise language.
  • Limit the unnecessary job requirements that don’t play a factor in a person’s ability to do the work.
  • Cross-check and proofread the job description before posting.

5. Does Your Job Posting Reach A Diverse Candidate Pool?

For attracting diverse employees, it’s essential to know whether your job postings are being delivered to a specific demographic only.

Many times, despite your best efforts in diversifying your hiring process, the targeted audience might not even be seeing your job postings.

Here are a few ways to get past this obstacle:

  • Use social media sites such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc., to spread the word.
  • Post the job role advertisement in different languages and on niche job boards.
  • If your company goes for campus recruitments, opt for holding a pool-campus drive.

6. Regulate Your Candidate Screening Process

The screening process is where various biases are displayed. The usual standards of choosing a candidate who went to the top school have perfect academics. However, an excellent working history manages to isolate many applicants who came from less than ideal conditions.

It impacts your organization’s diversity and robs you of the opportunity to interact and employ some talented yet overlooked people.

Here are some steps that you can take to ensure that the candidate screening process remains fair to everyone:

  • Opt for a pre-assessment test. It will provide every candidate with an equal opportunity to display their knowledge and skills.
  • Use some “blind hiring” tools that’ll hide the personal information, such as photos, school, etc., of the candidate from the hiring manager.

7. Regulate The Interview Process

Finally, the interview process is the final hurdle that a diverse employee has to cross. But, unfortunately, it is also the place where there are no alternatives to ensuring that every possibility of bias is eliminated.

  • Create better and diverse interview panels that can provide different views than your own.
  • Create and focus questions around their skillset by keeping past experiences as a secondary factor.
  • Give the option of dressing out casually as many people might not have the means to go all out on a formal suit. However, for companies where dressing up is mandatory, consider offering the renting of formal wear specifically for the interview process.


Is there any additional way through which you ensure that diversity hiring is prioritized in your organization? We’d love to hear it in the comments section below.

This article is written by Barasha Medhi who is a part of the marketing team at Vantage Circle. Barasha can be found either searching for interesting HR buzzwords to write about or looking at pictures of cozy Bel Air mansions. For any related queries, contact editor@vantagecircle.com.

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