How to Build a Diverse Workforce

Workplace diversity is one of the most discussed topics in the business community.
How to Build a Diverse Workforce

Many organizations today recognize the value in building a diverse. Inclusion and diversity are two terms that most HR departments are discussing heavily today, but they aren’t just catchwords. A diverse workforce leads to more ideas, more inclusion, and higher retention rates. Here are some ways your organization can build a diverse workforce. 

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Start at the Top 

If you want to have diversity among your entire workforce, you need to start by looking at the top. Is your company’s executive team diverse? Diversity refers to multiple races, ethnic backgrounds, gender, and sexual orientation. 

If you don’t have diversity at the highest levels of your organization, it will be much more challenging to encourage diversity lower down the ladder. What’s more, a diverse workforce will recognize an executive team that isn’t diverse, which could turn them off to the company as a whole.  

Injecting diversity into an executive team is more challenging than doing so at lower levels of your company. Over time, though, you should strive to bring diversity to the top rungs of your organization.  

Celebrate Cultures 

A great way to build a diverse workforce is to celebrate multiple cultures. You can set aside time each month to celebrate the culture and background of some of your employees. Let them take the lead on planning and preparing a company luncheon that highlights different foods and traditions of their own culture. Your company can celebrate multiple holidays from around the world as a way to include all employees and educate them on different perspectives as well. 

By integrating your employees into this planning process, you can promote inclusion while celebrating diversity. New potential employees will also see this as a positive for them, especially if they come from a different background.  

Recruit for Diversity 

One of the biggest benefits of a diverse workforce is the different viewpoints, ideas, and approaches that can be brought to your organization. People who come from different backgrounds, belong to different generations, and have different experiences can provide different ideas and ways of approaching problems and challenges. This can help you solve problems in new ways and create new products and/or services that will ultimately benefit your customers and your business.  

If you want to build a diverse workforce, you should start right from the beginning, when you are recruiting new employees. To do this, consider re-writing your job descriptions in a way that a more diverse applicant pool may be attracted to. 

Also consider posting job openings on a variety of sites. Traditional job sites are fine, but supplement those with postings on social media sites, other job boards, college forums, and any other place where you might attract candidates who are different from your current employees. 

Create Referral Programs 

Once you have started to recruit for diversity on your own, you can boost this approach by creating an employee referral program for new employees. Diverse employees are likely to be connected to even more diverse people from outside your organization—and these are the viewpoints that you should look to bring on board. 

When you create an employee referral program, you can accomplish two things. First, you can expand your company’s potential reach to diverse candidates. Second, you can reward your current employees if they refer a job opening to someone they know and their referral gets hired. 

A side benefit of this is it’s an inclusive way to involve your current employees in the recruiting process. That’s traditionally a task set aside for executive teams, managers and the HR department. A referral program breaks down those walls and makes the process more inclusive, which often results in greater diversity in hires. 

Include Everyone in the Process 

Diversity and inclusion are tied together at the hip. It’s hard to build a diverse workforce if you don’t also build an inclusive workplace. If you want to foster a diverse set of ideas on a long-term basis, you need to show your employee base that you are listening to what they say and taking action based upon it. 

The most effective way to do this is to include all employees in the feedback process. You can build new teams of employees whose job is to come up with new ideas for how to approach office policies, for example. Revising some old company policies to be more reflective of the current and future workforce is a great way to be more inclusive. When your current employees are able to give their input on what those policies should look like, you’re more likely to establish trust and loyalty among your workforce. 

Expand Your Business with SERVIAP 

SERVIAP is a leading Professional Employer Organization (PEO) ready to help your business expand operations throughout the Western Hemisphere. PEO is a model of co-employment, where we assume total responsibility for your talent, allowing you to focus on the strategic activities of your organization. Contact us today to learn more about how you can expand your business in South America and Latin America. 


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