Diversity is an important part of every workforce, both the greater job market and each individual workplace. Ideally, coworker populations would reflect the local population, but many professions have seen an imbalance that does not appropriately support those that are underrepresented in the workforce. Recruiters are often charged with the task of finding more capable, qualified and diverse team members to provide employers a better balance of candidates to choose from. When candidates are available in greater diversity, it’s naturally easier to hire more evenly as well with each candidate weighed solely on merit.
So how are we to fight back against industry imbalances on the recruiting level? Funding scholarships in STEM careers is a great way to nurture more candidates from diverse backgrounds in the future, and employers can offer professional development to build the skills and – therefore – qualifications of current professionals. On the recruitment level, however, how can we improve job listings and use of job boards to increase visibility to a wider range of professionals and make job listings more inviting for diverse populations currently job-hunting?
1. More Detailed Job Descriptions (Day-in-the-Life)
Often, those who have had trouble fitting into a workplace in the past are more quickly concerned with what working the job will be like. Many people look for a new job because the old one is stressful or hostile, which means finding a more inviting company culture, schedule, and team are important. Offer a more detail-rich description of what it’s like to work the job and be part of the employer’s team.
2. Add a Section for Benefits and Perks
Create a formal section in your job description for benefits and perks. Being able to plan a work-life balance ahead of time helps to avoid burnout and maintain a healthier personal life outside of work. So provide the details that make that possible: those tempting employee benefits that each employer cultivates to draw candidates competitively in the first place. It’s an appealing set of details for all modern professionals on the job hunt and more welcoming for those who are carefully building their next stage in life.
3. Use Schedule-Based Role Keywords
It’s often been said that flexible schedules are the key to a more diverse workplace, accommodating a wider range of lifestyles and personal needs outside of work. From a recruitment perspective, you can’t change a job’s schedule flexibility, but you can make your whole profile of recruitable roles more appealing by spotlighting the schedule details of each one. Use schedule-based keywords like “remote,” “hybrid,” and “flexible hours” to help female candidates quickly sort and find the role schedule types they most prefer.
4. Reduce & Clarify Your “Nice-to-Haves” List
One unusual job inequality is the “nice-to-haves” list and the “fake it till you make it” approach to interviewing. Men and those in the majority are more likely to bluff an interview if they don’t have 100% of the listed skills on a job description. This means job descriptions stuffed with an impossible list of both required and nice-to-have skills (the difference often indistinguishable), those in power (especially males) are more likely to apply with a bluff and later learn which skills are actually necessary.
Reduce your nice-to-haves AND make the difference more clear in must-haves and nice-to-haves. Those who are truly qualified for your roles will more confidently apply when they know that any missing skills are less immediately required and can be learned along the way.
5. Minimize Emphasis on Employment Gaps
In the job listing itself, make a mention that your company is not currently worried about employment gaps. Many people faced interrupted work due to COVID and those coming back to the workforce are helping make way for others who were displaced from the workforce even earlier. With the global workforce shortage, everyone coming back to the workforce, whether from medical leave or family obligations, is very good news.
Make your company’s attitude that you’re proud to be the stepping stone back into steady work. By disregarding gaps in the work history, you can welcome back a much larger category of available professionals who haven’t kept their cert renewals up to date.
6. Spotlight Altruistic Programs and Partnerships
Millennials and Gen Y both care more about charity and making an altruistic difference than previous generations of professionals. In fact, many are passionate about it. For some, “going green” has been a way of life and they prioritize everything from their employer to their groceries with that single goal in mind. But it’s not just greenery, any shared program with a cause your team will gain the respect and appeal of many in the industry. The more involved an employer is in altruistic projects, the more appealing they are. Especially for professionals who have causes they stand behind. If the employer you are recruiting for has charity projects or even employee charity participation, spotlight it.
7. Invite Outreach In Addition to Applications
Finally, invite applicants to reach out with questions before they submit an official application. One of the benefits of being an intermediary is the ability to talk to and advise candidates before they interact directly with employers. Candidates may have a critical question – perhaps about handicap accessibility or the commute – something critical that affects their decision-making but would be sly to know before applying at all. If an answer does turn out to be a deal-breaker, keep in touch and help those who reach out to find better roles for their skills and needs.
The way you write your job listings can have a great deal of effect when it comes to the workforce balance by changing how you draw and inspire candidates to apply. The more diverse our candidate pool, the more diversity we can nurture in roles across the board. By overcoming our preconceived notions and tidying up the interview questions, you can hone your hiring team to find you the best candidate for each role. With these techniques ready to implement, you are sure to see the boost in new hires and new team members that you’ve been looking for.
Growth happens when you have the right people in place. Our Talent Acquisition solution handles every step of the process from hiring to retiring.
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