Four Ways to Recruit for the Surprising Diversity Factor You Haven’t Been Thinking About4 min read

October 29, 2018 Talent Acquisition

You’re a pro. You know diversity is essential to your recruitment efforts and the overall health of your organization, but if you think you know what top talent considers “diverse,” you may be in for a surprise.

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According to employees surveyed in the 2018 Yello Diversity Study: What Job Seekers Really Think About Your Diversity Practices,* one of the most important types of workplace diversity has nothing to do with a person’s race, gender, age, sexual orientation, or anything else that might fit with a protected classes category.

That diversity type is “personality.”

Would you have considered employee personalities as a top factor candidates think about when determining the overall diversity of an organization? More importantly, are you confident your current recruiting process delivers different personality types?

Here are the top four ways to improve your yield on diverse personalities.

1. Cultivate a Dynamite Pipeline of Talent

According to Tanya Bourque, an experienced sourcing, recruiting and HR professional, “Diverse teams are proven to be more creative than teams that are filled with individuals who come from similar backgrounds and life experiences.” But even among companies with established diversity recruitment strategies, there is still one commonality you want all your candidates to share: an enthusiasm about the prospect of working with you.

Instead of starting your recruitment efforts from scratch whenever a job requisition lands on your desk, turn to your pipeline to source candidates who are 1) sincerely engaged with your recruitment brand, and 2) qualified for the roles you’re likely to offer.  

Recognizing who wants to join your organization before you even have an open position allows you to speed up the recruiting process so you can reduce your time-to-fill while delivering quality of hire metrics that are off the charts. Using a candidate relationship management tool (CRM) can help you optimize your diversity recruitment communication and funnel amazing candidates—with diverse personalities—into your talent pipeline.

2. Double-down on Recruiting from Traditional Diversity Categories

Although “personality” (47%)—along with “age” (47%)—was the number-two most important type of diversity for employees considering an ideal workplace, the number-one most important type was “ethnicity/race” (48%), and the number-three most important type was “gender” (45%).

As the survey reveals, employees care about traditional diversity recruitment categories. Additional diversity categories the survey identified  as important to employees include “sexual orientation” (24%), “disability” (24%), “religion” (23%), and “military service” (18%). Engage candidates among these groups, and others, who have a range of backgrounds, characteristics, experiences and beliefs and you’ll be likely to connect with a range of personalities.

If you can’t commit to diversity and inclusion in a meaningful way, candidates may decline your offers.

Learn more in a study from Yello and The Harris Poll.

3. Give Your Team More Time to Have Meaningful Conversations

You can’t assess a candidate’s personality without the chance to speak with them—preferably many times—but good conversations aren’t exactly easy to arrange.

Or are they?

With video interview software, you can enable everyone on the recruiting and hiring teams to review and evaluate initial screening questions at any time. And with interview scheduling software, you can make sure your candidates have a smooth interview experience with hiring managers and teams who are present, prepared and ready to be won over by a parade of winning personalities. Throughout the interview process, Maynard Webb, an executive, author and entrepreneur, reminds companies to “employ a diverse set of interviewers.” Providing candidates the opportunity to interact with a range of employees will help show your commitment to a diverse workplace.

4. Consider Unconventional Backgrounds with an Open Mind

When you have a talent pipeline stocked with engaged and qualified candidates, and you’re using interview software to make the most of your time during the screening and interview process, you can afford to introduce some creativity into your decision making.

Yes, you should tap candidates who check all the boxes and make perfect, conventional sense for the role you intend to fill. That’s a given. But if you’re smart and efficient with your use of candidate relationship management tools, you can allow yourself the chance to find a real diamond in the rough by considering candidates with unusual backgrounds.

Your next great hire may be someone with unconventional yet transferable experience from a job that has nothing to do with the one you’re trying to fill. Some candidates won’t be the right fit—but if you want to promote diversity and a range of interesting personalities in your hires, you should give yourself permission to take a chance every now and then.

* If you haven’t had a chance to review the 2018 Yello Diversity Study, you should check it out. This nationwide online survey was conducted from August 6 to August 8, 2017, by The Harris Poll on behalf of Yello. It surveyed 1,206 employed adults ages 18 and up, and it’s filled with surprising insights about the role diversity and inclusion practices play in the job search and workplace.

Get your copy of the diversity recruitment action plan.

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