An organization’s recruitment strategy should be inclusive of plans to target diverse populations. The need to remain competitive and innovative requires employers to move away from traditionally targeted audiences and implement practices that will align them to become Employers of Choice in this competitive work environment. Having a focus on creating targeted recruiting practices for African Americans and other diverse populations can increase employee engagement. According to an article by CNBC, “Black buying power was $1.4 trillion in 2019, according to the Selig Center for Economic Growth.” And is “projected to grow to $1.8 trillion by 2024.” Additionally, intentionally recruiting from populations who can elevate brand recognition also makes good business sense. This sets the groundwork for increased innovation by broadening the chances of having the right people in the room making decisions.
However, the absence of targeted strategies will continue to omit diversity in the recruiting pipeline. “The unfortunate reality is that there is a very limited pool of Black talent to recruit from with this specific experience…” A recent statement made by Wells Fargo & Co. Chief Executive Charlie Scharf is one example of why there is such huge deficit. Unfortunately, this type of thinking lends itself to innovation stagnation. The “pool” is full of talented and qualified diverse candidates; however, organizations must move beyond the shallow end.
Leave No Stone Unturned
Brand- The talent competition is real. Your organizational brand is key to attracting top talent. Your organization’s website should reflect your commitment to diversity and demonstrate your commitment to creating inclusive and equitable work environments.
Educational institutions- Establishing meaningful relationships with students is beneficial. Organizations should consider volunteering in schools, as well as creating internship programs for high school and college students. This allows employers to engage employees through volunteering. It also leaves an impact with students as they transition into the professional world.
Delve deeper- Connect with churches, community-based groups, community colleges, workforce development programs and other training programs.
Recruiting diverse talent, such as Black, Indigenous, other people of color and women, requires intentionality, accountability and expansion of your candidate pool. It also requires commitment. As organizations seek to improve diversity, equity and inclusion, diversity recruiting is only one piece in the puzzle. We must continue to forge forward until we can put all the pieces together to form the perfect picture.
Takiyah Cunningham, M.S. HRD