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Can you use tech to embed diversity and inclusion into your organisation?

Diversity and inclusion is a term that we are hearing more and more and with good reason. Programs of diversity and inclusion are becoming increasingly important to companies. Many of them are looking for digital solutions that will help them to improve the way in which they consider and drive their diversity and inclusion policies. There are many HR software solutions on the market that offer a range of incredibly innovative solutions. These can help to increase scale, consistency and give much better insights into the diversity and inclusion efforts of an organisation.

It is important for HR, business leaders and even those with project management skills to recognise that improved diversity and inclusion can actually have an impact when it comes to the culture and brand that a company has in the public eye. The ability to retain and attract talent and the performance of the business are also impacted. There have been a great many studies carried out on the subject of diversity. The one thing that has been a constant from one study to the next is that those organisations that are diverse are in fact more innovative. They have better outcomes from their business and perhaps most importantly in the business world, they are more profitable. Diversity and inclusion are more important now than they have ever been, and they are a vital component when it comes to making better business and human outcomes. That is, those situations when every employee feels like they are valued and included in the workplace.

In order to drive a consistency in this area, and also provide better insights into any initiatives they might have around diversity, more companies are turning to technology to help them. The market for diversity and inclusion technology tools is a robust one and with good reason. This is an area that companies are continually looking to improve in and that means getting the right tools to achieve that goal.

Acquisition of talent

The arena of diversity and inclusion has been one filled with significant growth. There are a huge number of solutions available for attracting a workforce that is diverse and for reducing the sometimes unconscious bias that can exist within the recruiting process. It can also help to facilitate effective selection of candidates. Some examples of this are:

  • Evaluation of text to ensure there is minimum bias in job postings
  • Job posting outreach tools that can recognise networks for more diversity in candidates
  • Automation capabilities that have the ability to remove names from resumes or other identifying details that could give an unconscious bias
  • Video-based AI in order to assess potential bias of interviewers during interviews through body movement and speech
  • Resume analysis that offers skills match evidence to match the job description in order to widen candidate pool and create more exacting matches

When it comes to any diversity strategy, talent acquisition is vital, and it is widely expected that the level of diversity and inclusion technology software that is being used will increase significantly in the future.

Learning and development

When it comes to learning and development, companies have most commonly provided training in respect of sexual harassment or even unconscious bias training as a part of their efforts towards creating a more diverse and inclusive environment. There are however new approaches to diversity and inclusion that are gaining in popularity. Some companies are now providing virtual reality awareness, diversity, and unconscious bias training to allow employees a better insight into the point of view of their colleagues – in particular, those of a different gender, ability of race. It can also allow them to practice these new behaviours in a work environment. There are a wide range of vendors currently in the marketplace who also assist diverse employees in finding mentors either in or outside of their current network in order to provide personalised career planning and development of targeted skills.

Employee engagement

One thing you learn on project manager courses is that listening is a key skill. When it comes to diversity and inclusion solutions this is no different. A lot of listening to people and feedback has made it possible for companies to tailor questions that they might use in surveys and identify any themes that exist in the feedback. Other technology that is available makes it possible to evaluate behaviour in real-time and identify when a team, or members of a team, may not be practicing inclusive ways.

Good technology can even be used to measure any differences that show how a manager is communicating and this can help to improve self-awareness and understanding to ensure that there is a consistency being displayed in terms of inclusivity.

The importance of analytics

Diversity and inclusion analytics are at the heart of developing an insight into the workplace. They are important for guiding the decision making process and prioritising those areas of diversity and inclusion that may be in need of some improvement. Common data that can be captured for analytical purposes may include information on the representation of diversity within a company, turnover rates for diverse employees, and even data regarding pay and equality in that field. Any information that is found because of this data gathering can be used to impact the specific diversity and inclusion activities that can be seen on business outcomes. It can also estimate any financial impact that may result from diversity and inclusion initiatives. There are a number of software solutions on the market that can also assist with this as well.

Other factors that these emerging software solutions can look at are identifying how a diverse employee base are networked when compared to majority groups within the same company. This is still an emerging field. However, when used correctly it can help to further build up an awareness of culture and opportunities in order to create a workplace that is more inclusive.

There is much more awareness around the idea of diversity and inclusion and these significant improvements in technology have been a vital boost to those companies who are looking to improve their initiatives in this field. Taking the right steps now can really help to make a company more diverse and inclusive and this can ultimately improve productivity and collaboration.

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