In our upcoming webinar, D&I Beyond the Tech Stack, we discuss the various aspects of diversity and inclusion in recruitment and how to create a roadmap for a successful Diversity and Inclusion rollout.In this series of short articles, we’re giving you a brief introduction to the topics that we’ll cover during the webinar itself.
In our fourth and final article we discuss the topic of D&I metrics and goals.
As always, our speakers for the webinar, Tom Jones of Vera Whole Health, Joanne Lockwood of SEE Change Happen, Jim Berrisford of Rezoomo and Joe Aburdene from vsource will have much more to share on the topic on November 11th.
But for now, let’s talk about the somewhat sensitive issue of asking both employees and applicants to share their diversity information.
Data is key
As with everything in the world of recruitment, data is key. But unlike many other aspects of the industry, diversity and inclusion data can be quite hard to come by.
Yes, we can take global and nationwide diversity metrics into account but often this data isn’t quite as specific or targeted as we’d like it to be.
What we really need is true data that can only be obtained from current employees and applicants for open roles.
And therein lies the problem.
Asking appropriate questions
As you are no doubt well aware, asking diversity related questions at the application stage of the hiring process is fraught with dangers. The last thing we want to do is lead applicants to believe that their cultural background, gender, or physical ability could have a bearing on the success of their application.
Right now, the sharing of diversity information is completely voluntary and rough estimates show that only 50% of applicants or employees are willing to share. In fact, many potential candidates might feel that the questions are entirely inappropriate as the answers should have no impact on their ability to perform a task.
Framing those questions correctly
If we really want that data (and yes, we certainly do) then it’s not just about asking the right questions but how we frame them.
As with all things recruitment, in this situation, honesty is the best policy.
Keep your current staff informed with regards to your D&I initiatives so that they fully understand your reasons for collecting what they might feel is sensitive information.
The same can be said when asking candidates to volunteer their information. Be completely transparent about your goals so that they can grasp the importance of the questions. You can also try to highlight the benefits (what’s in it for them) that could have a positive impact on their working environment should they land the role.
Above all else, you should refrain from bombarding the applicants with too many questions. A few carefully worded and specifically targeted questions will be much more likely to illicit a response than a full-on questionnaire.
Data and metrics are extremely important in the overall push for a truly diverse and inclusive workplace and asking the right questions is only one very small aspect of your strategy. If you’d like to learn what else our expert panelists have to say on the matter then go ahead and book your spot on our webinar by clicking the link below.