Fostering an inclusive work environment requires more than an equity statement and corporate diversity policy. A true workplace culture of inclusion and belonging needs the support of organizational leadership and management to not only address worker discrimination, microaggressions, and implicit biases, but also to strive for substantial improvements in workforce representation and psychological safety in physical, hybrid, and remote work environments.
Building a diverse workforce, including workers with lived experience, is one of several actions an employer can take to create an equitable and inclusive culture. An organization’s leadership and workforce should reflect a diverse community of identities representing, but not limited to, various races, genders, ages, sexual orientations, disabilities, and those who identify as living with a mental health condition or substance use disorder.
Consider the following ideas for recruiting diverse candidates:
- Listing explicit statements about non-discrimination and equal opportunity;
- Encouraging traditionally marginalized populations to apply;
- Publishing the job listing in multiple languages most often used by the organization
- Avoiding using strictly he or she pronouns or solely using "they" or "the individual;" and
- Using person-centric descriptors (e.g., person with a disability).
- Determining which positions do not require a high school diploma, GED, or college degree;
- Similarly weighing years of education and work experience;
- Offering interviews in more than one language if the job can be performed in another language; and
- Providing, if needed, accommodations to applicants during the interview.
(e.g., veterans, immigrants, LGBTQ+, neurodiverse individuals, people of color, and Latinx). Collaborate with partners, vendors, universities, local nonprofit organizations, and the clients and communities you serve to increase the organization’s network and open up a larger candidate pool.
- Removing names, dates, and headshots from resumes;
- Scheduling phone (versus video) interviews;
- Using the same interview questions and recruitment checklist for all candidates;
- Training hiring managers about unconscious or implicit biases; and
- Providing clear guidance on how to interview candidates for their strengths and differences.
including existing staff, a constituent, or a community representative in the decision-making process.
to learn more about their perspective and commitment to equity and inclusion, especially if the organization serves specific populations.
address gaps in recruitment and hiring processes, and compare the composition of applicants to new hires to identify any bias in candidate selection.