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61% of employees believe diversity and inclusion strategies are beneficial and essential.
Today (May 21) is World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development, a United Nations sanctioned international holiday for the promotion of diversity issues.
At a time when the impact of COVID-19 is changing our working habits, we examine why it’s vital to create an office culture which is as diverse as it is inclusive. This comes as statistics from software company Quantum Workplace’s Diversity + Inclusion report reveal how 75% of employees believe that more diversity is needed.
Taking steps to diversify will help to foster employee loyalty and boost morale, while helping to contribute to a vibrant working environment which is brimming with different outlooks and perspectives.
What constitutes a diverse workplace?
When asked about what it means to implement a diverse workforce, people tend to conjure up an environment which comprises employees of various genders, ethnicities and racial backgrounds.
While this is true, there’s definitely more to it than this. In fact, a diverse workforce includes people across categories such as religion, sexual orientation, languages, culture, educational background, ways of thinking, physical ability, socioeconomic status and skill-sets.
Here’s why it’s important to cultivate a diverse workplace.
When a group of like-minded people are put together, they will inevitably generate similar ideas because their ways of thinking are similar. Taking steps to mix a diverse range of individuals will help to eliminate any homogenous attitudes, resulting in a workforce which can bounce ideas off each other, exchange unique perspectives and ultimately spark exciting and innovative new ideas.
According to Deloitte, cognitive diversity can enhance team innovation by up to 20%.
Amped up productivity
Diversity and productivity enjoy a symbiotic relationship. In fact, research by Forbes has found that diversifying your team can boost productivity by a staggering 77%
A diverse workforce is more likely to understand each individual client’s requirements and expectations and devise ways to effectively meet them. Diversity also has the added bonus of boosting morale, forging a desire to work more efficiently.
A workplace which encourages diversity and inclusion will make employees feel valued and accepted for who they are, without fear of discrimination or recrimination. This will ensure that your workforce is happy, meaning they’re more likely to stay loyal to your business and everything it has to offer.
Cutting down on overall employee turnover leaves more money to invest elsewhere. According to Glassdoor, 67% of job seekers consider workplace diversity an important factor when considering employment opportunities, which shows how vital it is to take steps to cultivate a strong framework.
Broaden your client base
Hiring a diverse workforce will help you to appeal to a wider range of clients or customers. Showing that you are supporting and that your brand is representing people from different backgrounds will increase your visibility to a wider market audience. If your employees have enjoyed varied experiences, they’ll be able to connect with and build strong relationships with people from all walks of life.
The key to attracting diverse applicants when hiring is to adjust your attitude to recruiting. The following approaches can prove particularly effective:
- Widen your talent pipeline to find people from different backgrounds
- Invest in diversity-focused job advertising platforms
- Shout about the fact that your organisation is diversity led
- Assemble a diverse interview panel
If you would like to discuss this or any topics covered in our articles, please get in touch with the MERJE team: email@example.com.