Facilitating a diverse and inclusive workplace is not only morally right for organisations, but it also makes good business sense. The benefits range from smoother workplace relations, less conflict and staff turnover, increased productivity and innovation and improved morale.
Organisations have plenty of options when it comes to improving their inclusivity efforts.
A diverse and inclusive workplace allows all employees to feel equally involved and supported within an organisation. The organisation is happy to employ people of different ages, genders, races, cultures, religions, sexualities, impairments and family responsibilities.
There are many options available to organisations when it comes to improving their diversity and inclusivity. Here are a few to consider.
An organisation can’t become diverse if it doesn’t employ workers from all walks of society. Firstly, you need to make it accessible for everyone to apply for jobs and be able to gain employment in the organisation. Some organisations advertise jobs and make it clear that the role is suitable for all, including those with disabilities. Roles across the organisation should be made suitable for everyone to apply, not just entry level roles.
The organisation’s job ads should advise candidates that it’s a diverse and inclusive workplace, and that everyone is welcome to apply for employment there. Include details in the job ad of how you provide flexible working hours for people who want part-time or work from home options. You could also place employment ads on job boards that target under represented groups.
Candidates coming in for an interview need to see that the organisation is diverse, so the interview panel should reflect that as much as possible. When inviting candidates to come in for an interview, ask if they need any adjustments made or have any requests that may help to assist them during the interview.
Make it known that the organisation has a diverse workforce by including important messaging throughout marketing and communications. There are a number of ways this messaging can be incorporated, including details on the About Us page of the website and in the annual report. Your organisation can also look to support and engage with other organisations and initiatives that are important to staff through sponsorship and fundraising events.
The HR policy should include references to anti-descrimination and inclusion initiatives. Having a HR policy that supports diversity and inclusivity gives staff reassurance that they can access a range of initiatives that are important to them.
Some of these initiatives may include:
It’s one thing to tell staff that you’re an inclusive and diverse workplace, but will all staff understand what it means? Staff training for workers at all levels of the organisation will ensure everyone knows the basics. The training may include:
Recognising and celebrating special days and events can show staff that the organisation values inclusion. Some events to consider for the calendar include:
Ask staff to nominate events that are important to them.
It’s not enough for members of the management team to claim that the organisation is diverse and inclusive - the majority of staff also have to agree. Ask staff if they think there is any unconscious bias around recruitment or promotion of any groups of people. Give staff the opportunity to provide feedback on whether the organisation is doing enough to foster workforce diversity and how they rate the organisation. Regular short surveys allow staff to communicate any special needs, changed circumstances, or cultural requirements they may have.
An organisation doesn’t become inclusive or diverse over night. It takes time to put policies in place and change the communications, and even longer to change the culture. Not many organisations have the skills in-house to complete the necessary changes, so gaining advice from an external party like Altius Group can ensure changes are made.
Altius Group offers a range of workplace wellbeing packages, designed by our team of allied health professionals, that are evidence-based, innovative and results orientated. If you need guidance on creating a more diverse and inclusive workplace, or you're interested in boosting the wellbeing of your workplace another way, read more about our Workplace Wellbeing Programs.
If you would like more information, call 1800 258 487 or get in contact online.