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Mayes Wilson & Associates

Creating a more inclusive and equitable hiring process (Part Two)

Sara Wilson, CPCC, ACC | DEI recruiting

In this second installment in my blog series on creating a more inclusive and equitable hiring process, I examine the recruiting phase. Although I’m not an HR professional, I’m always learning and want to share what may be new ideas for some readers. I am confident our mutual desire is to bring the best and brightest individuals to the nonprofit sector and eliminate barriers that exist in attracting those folks.

In part 1 of this series, I discussed designing an inclusive and equitable hiring process, including who to involve, questions to ask about your organization’s commitment to DEI, transparency, and suggestions related to using a search firm.

Are you unsure about the benefits of a hiring process that reflects using a DEI lens? Consider that more than 3 in 4 employees and job seekers (76%) report a diverse workforce is an important factor when evaluating companies. “It’s critical to understand how important diversity and inclusion is to employees and job seekers today,” according to Glassdoor Chief People Officer, Carina Cortez. “Employers have to be transparent about their commitments to D&I, otherwise, they’ll miss out on hiring quality and diverse talent,” Cortez continues.  So if you want the best people on your team, diversity and an inclusive process should not be an afterthought in your organization. Here are some ideas about how to improve your recruitment using a DEI lens.

State your organization’s commitment to diversity.

Don’t overstate. Be honest. Be prepared to discuss your commitment and how your organization demonstrates this during the interview.

Post the salary range.

This is fundamental in advancing salary equity. When the salary is posted your organization demonstrates that you care about transparency and equitable salary structures. Some research indicates that many candidates don’t apply if the salary is not posted.

Review the posting for gender-neutrality.

Women were less likely to believe they belonged in a particular job when the advertisement used masculine wording, and they rated masculine jobs as less appealing.” Without realizing it, we use language that is subtly ‘gender-coded’ because society has certain expectations of what genders are like and how they differ. One resource to check your job posting for gender neutrality is Gender Decoder.  Not convinced? The words in the following list are all considered to be gender-coded. Which words do you think are associated to male and which to female?

  • analysis/analytical
  • collaborate/collaboration
  • competitive
  • lead/leader
  • responsible
  • share
  • strong
  • support

Post the job announcement in a wide range of places

Everyone gets their information from different sources. Some places to consider include different professional associations, business affinity groups, and job boards for specific groups.

Beware of only reaching out to people you know.

Are you accidentally creating barriers and perpetuating hiring people “just like you”? Referrals can be a systemic barrier to equity and inclusion. Great candidates from under-represented groups often do not have access to the tight connections sometimes enjoyed by those in dominant groups.

Take the time to review your hiring process. Where necessary, modify it so it is inclusive and equitable. You may not get it perfect! Change is a process and starting is important. I’ll continue to share what I’m learning in my third post in this series.

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