At Intrax Global Internships, we connect companies with interns from around the world. We know how important diversity recruitment strategies are in the workplace and how companies can grow and innovate when they have diverse teams.
Today, recruitment strategies for diversity should be a priority for companies everywhere.
Not only are potential employees paying attention to the makeup of your teams and management, but having workers from different backgrounds is an opportunity to develop fresh ideas, stimulate creativity, and ensure a more global perspective at every level of your company.
Without it, you’ll fall behind.
Your company does better when you have diverse employees—about 35% better than companies that don’t.
However, you can’t reach diversity just by saying “okay, we’ll hire more diverse employees.” There needs to be an actual strategy in place to ensure that it happens. Otherwise, old, unintentional habits kick in and you won’t see the results you’re looking for when hiring new employees. Keep reading to understand what creating a diversity recruitment strategy entails and how it benefits your business.
What is a Diversity and Inclusion Recruitment Strategy?
Having a diversity and inclusion recruitment strategy means that you’re setting out to create a diverse work environment, with teams made up of people from many backgrounds and cultures. And you’re not just hiring them, you’re celebrating those differences in the workplace.
For example, you can champion diversity in the workplace by hiring employees of differing gender identities, home countries, native languages, ages, and physical abilities. When you celebrate these differences, instead of treating them as a simple goal or quota to hit, you create a work culture in which everyone feels like they belong and they’re a valuable part of the company. Employees who feel valued are more likely to feel safe at work, be happier when they’re working, and stay with the company.
Your diversity and inclusion recruitment strategy needs to be active.
Unconscious bias can easily get in the way of your recruitment strategy when left unchecked. Much of it is ingrained in society and the workplace—at every level—from the initial hiring process to the top tiers of your company.
The Reality of Workplace Diversity
Discrimination in the workplace affects many workers, including:
- African Americans
- Latinx and Hispanic
- Asian Americans
- LGBTQ+ individuals
- International students
In major fields, women make up a small percentage of the workforce:
Bias, whether unconscious or not, plays a major role in why this is. Men are often chosen over women in these fields, even if they have the same work experience. The same occurs with African Americans in similar fields.
When it comes to religious discrimination, those who follow different religions, such as Islam, often find that their jobs either aren’t open to adjusting things so they can follow their practice, or companies won’t hire them because of what their faith entails. Meanwhile, those who identify as LGBTQ+ often face discrimination in the workplace, and in many states, don’t have protection against it.
Having an active diversity and inclusion recruitment strategy in place can help mitigate these biases and change your office into a place that is welcoming to everyone.
Why is a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Recruitment Strategy Important?
Today, consumers and potential employees are scrutinizing companies to make sure they’re following recruiting best practices and building diverse teams. People want to know that the companies they work for, work with, and buy from share their values.
When you hire those of various backgrounds, talents, abilities, and identities, you simultaneously build trust in your audience and your employees and help mend the opportunity gap for minorities that industries have historically left out in the past. Companies that have diversity at all levels of their business, meaning that management levels and higher include different people, prove to others that everyone can succeed within that business.
By following innovative recruitment ideas to build your strategy and find your team, you’re ensuring you find the best people for the job and proving that people are a priority in your business. This is an attractive quality for candidates when they look for employers, and it often leads to employees sticking around.
However, while many companies try to diversify their workplace, they often miss the mark…
What Companies Get Wrong When It Comes to Minority Recruitment Strategies
Employers and recruiters may want to hire more diverse employees, but what that looks like in reality is a lot more complicated. Harvard Business Review reported on an incentivized resume rating study with recruiters. They had them rate random resumes to get insight into where biases were in the hiring process.
While 90% of those who participated said that diversity was something they considered when hiring, the results Harvard found contradicted this.
For example, when looking at internships on resumes, employers held internships in higher regard than a regular summer job. Students that have the economic status to be able to hold an unpaid internship have the advantage over students who may not be able to afford to work unpaid over the summer. Employers may not even consider that situation when looking at resumes, and it can cause a gap between wealthier and lower-income individuals.
Along those same lines, if women and men did the same internship…recruiters ranked the men 50% higher than women.
Another example from the study is that within the STEM field, women and minorities needed to have a higher GPA than white men to get the same recognition. Recruiters ranked the resume of a white man with a GPA of 3.75 the same as a woman’s with a GPA of 4.0.
It’s clear how even with the best intentions to diversify the hiring process, companies can get it completely wrong and fall back into old patterns. When this happens, it negatively impacts the company, its workforce, and its productivity. Companies are much better off when they have diverse employees.
Benefits of Diversity and Inclusion in the Workplace
When you make diversity a priority in your company, you end up with a competitive advantage in the industry. Some benefits of diversity and inclusion in the workplace include:
- Better talent
- More innovation
- Higher productivity
- Revenue growth
- Expansion of outreach
- Increased creativity
- Happier and healthier employees
Diverse companies see 19% higher revenue than other companies. This is because they can innovate and be more creative when there are different viewpoints within the company to work with.
Having diverse teams ensures you have multiple perspectives, which leads to better ideas and the ability to reach a wider audience throughout the world. Especially when you have employees from countries that you want to have a presence in—they can better direct you on how to tap into new markets.
This open, global outlook also ensures you find the employees you need. When you look beyond your immediate area for recruitment and are open to others in different countries, you have a much bigger selection of potential employees to work with.
By setting up an environment in which employees feel respected, comfortable, and seen—where they don’t have to hide who they are—they’ll feel happier and safer at work. A safe environment allows employees to take risks, which leads to innovation and helps your company not fall behind in an increasingly competitive landscape.
Additionally, when you look to add student recruitment to your strategy, already having a diverse workplace will draw more students and graduates to your company. If they see your company as a place that values diversity and allows people of all backgrounds to succeed, they’ll be more likely to want to work with you.
In fact, 86% of women and 74% of men prefer companies that value and commit to diversity in the workplace.
How To Develop Diverse Recruitment Strategies in 2022
To create the best diversity recruitment strategy for your company, you need to look forward, not backward. Don’t look at diversity recruitment strategies 2020 or diversity recruitment strategies 2021—they haven’t yet done enough to establish true diversity in the workplace.
If you currently have a strategy in place, take a second look at it to ensure you’re doing all you can to hire more diverse workers and promote inclusivity in the workplace. If you don’t have a concrete strategy yet, take time to reflect on your goals when it comes to hiring for diversity and keep them in mind as you move forward to create one.
Best Recruitment Strategies for Diversity
Here are some of the best steps you can take to build a strong diversity recruitment strategy within your company:
- Review your current strategy
- Look for candidates beyond typical sources
- Develop referral programs
- Rethink your job descriptions
- Slow down resume reviews
- Require diversity training
- Implement international internships
One of the first steps you can take to see where you’re at when it comes to having a strong recruitment strategy for diversity is to check in with your current process. See if your recruiters are making the same mistakes others did in the Harvard Business Review study. Take a look at the applications that come in versus who gets called in for an interview. This gives you a clear idea of where you’re at and what you can do to change things.
Expanding where you’re looking for candidates is another big step toward hiring diversely. Instead of sticking to places like Indeed or LinkedIn, expand your reach. These recruitment ideas include reaching out to historically black colleges or universities (HBCUs) to form partnerships or show up at career fairs, developing a referral program for your employees to bring in new talent, and being present at networking events.
Job descriptions are another area to adjust when it comes to creating your recruitment strategies for diversity. The language you use can alienate potential candidates from applying to open positions. For example, if you use gendered language, potential employees that don’t identify with that gender are less likely to apply because they’ll think they can’t qualify for the position. Writing job descriptions with neutral, open language will invite more people to apply for the role.
The same goes for reviewing the applications of those who have applied for your job opening. One recruiting best practice is to not shut out potential employees that don’t meet every single requirement set out in the description. On average, 40% of applicants don’t hit every single requirement. Limiting interviews to only those who meet every single criterion narrows your group of candidates and doesn’t allow you to find someone who may be a perfect fit and can grow into the role.
In addition, slowing down the process of looking at applications can help avoid unconscious bias from creeping in. When recruiters aren’t in a rush, they can more objectively weigh resumes to see who would be a great fit for the role.
To truly champion diversity in the workplace and make it part of your company culture, diversity training is essential for employees of all levels. Having everyone on the same page promotes unity and creates a safe, welcoming environment for anyone who enters it. It’s especially important for those in management positions to attend diversity training, as it sets the tone for company culture and sets an example for employees to follow. This allows employees to understand why changes are being made and helps them get on board with them.
A great way to add diversity and ensure your team has fresh ideas is having a student recruitment strategy. Students and recent graduates can provide a wealth of information and talent to your company and help push your company forward. One way to do this is by looking to international interns to increase diversity and make your recruitment strategy stronger.
Hiring International Interns as Part of Your Diversity Recruitment Strategy
A great opportunity to hire for diversity is by hiring interns to work with you. Both you and the interns benefit from this relationship. They can get necessary, real-world job training, and you can fill essential positions and experience firsthand the benefits of having a diverse team.
Internships are a great recruitment idea because there’s the potential to find long-term employees, as interns can stick around and progress with the company. Internships can also be in-person or remote to allow you and potential interns the flexibility of working together from wherever you are.
By branching out and focusing on international internships, you can lay the groundwork for becoming a global leader in your industry and take the first steps toward building a workforce that’s as diverse as possible. There are excited international students and recent graduates that want to work with your company and are ready to bring new ideas, perspectives, and culture to the workplace.
- Every step of the process is easy and affordable
- You can focus on the most important tasks instead of getting bogged down in the complicated processes and paperwork
- 24/7 support for you and your interns
Diversify Your Workforce With Intrax Global Internships
Working with global interns is easy with Intrax Global Internships. We are a J-1 Visa sponsor, designated by the U.S. Department of State. We make working with international students and graduates easy and convenient so companies like yours can connect with potential workers throughout the world.
We know that innovation and diverse teams lead the way to company success, and we want to ensure that borders don’t prevent any company or employee from reaching their full potential. Annually, we work with 21,000 participants in our programs in 100+ countries (read more about us and our mission!).
When you work with us at Intrax Global Internships, you take a major step forward in your diversity recruitment strategy and ensure you build diverse teams. Students and graduates have a chance to expand their job opportunities and learn important skills from their time with your company, and you connect with young professionals that are eager to learn and ready to work. Learn about our students’ intern experiences from what they’ve shared in their own words.
If you’re ready to start a global internship program and make international interns part of your diversity recruitment strategy, (like the over 350,000 people we’ve worked with since our beginning) we’re ready to dive in with you. Check out these resources and request more information to get started.