From working with clients to address and improve diversity and inclusion in the digital and tech sector; there is a clear sense that organisations deem this an important issue. As well as speaking to the market and engaging in conversations with hiring managers and business leaders; there is also a lot of academic resource and evidence to support the significance of incorporating diversity and inclusion into your recruitment strategy.
According to Tipper (2004), recruiting more diversley had been a hot topic in the UK employment marketplace for a number of years. Yet here we are 15 years later, still discussing it as ‘hot topic’, but what advancement have we made?
By 2015, the UK had reached its target of having at least 25% of board members female (Savage, 2015, cited in Stewart, 2016). However, only 5% of senior managers were BAME and between 2006 and 2013 the gap of BAMEs in management and non-management roles rose from 1.1 per cent to 4 per cent (Wyatt & Sylvester, cited in Stewart, 2016). Surely the gap should have been closed if organisations were tackling these issues correctly. It could be argued that these statistics suggest at this level, there is an issue with development or retention within these businesses, hence the lack of diversity at the top. It has been documented that perhaps organisations need to invest more time and effort in to the retention of women and ethnic minorities employees before embarking on new headcount (Human Resource Management International Digest, 2006).
So, what is the real issue – talent attraction or retention and development?
Diversity in the workplace results in better productivity. By having diverse thinking in product development teams, it can aid the quality of the products and features and make them more attractive to a wider audience (Tipper, 2004). As the digital and tech world is expanding, the need for talent is becoming greater, therefore in order to produce the best products to the market, teams must be diverse. Businesses need to produce talent pipelines that include women and BAMEs (Stewart, 2016).
Diversity and Inclusion extends far beyond gender and race, so talent pipelines need to be wider and more diverse than ever before.
Stewart, C. (2016). How diverse is your pipeline? Developing the talent pipeline for women and black and ethnic minority employees. Industrial and Commercial Training, 48(2), 61-66
Tipper, J. (2004). How to increase diversity through your recruitment practices. Industrial and Commercial Training, 36(4), 158-161
When the rhetoric doesn’t match the reality: equality and diversity in recruitment and retention of staff. 2006. Human Resource Management International Digest, 14(3), 29-32