US must adopt a multicultural workforce

The labor force is projected to reach more than 164 million people by 2020, and the US will no longer have any single ethnic or racial majority by 2065. According to a 2015 report by the US Census Bureau, millennials are now the largest generation in American history and 44.2% classify themselves as something other than “white.” It has been proven that a diverse workforce drives economic growth, and in order for corporate America to thrive, it must adopt a multicultural workforce for our ever-changing marketplace.

Data has shown that inclusive groups outperform their peers by 80% in team-based assessments. Despite this, only five out of all Fortune 500 companies have African American CEOs and resumes submitted by people with African American-sounding names are 14% less likely to get call backs than those with white-sounding names.

When examining women in the workforce, companies with more women on the board statistically outperform their peers over a long period of time. Yet there are fewer Fortune 500 CEOs who are women (4.1%) than those who are named David (4.5%) or John (5.3%), meaning that two single male names outnumber an entire gender.

PREMIUM CONTENT: U.S. Diversity Staffing Firms

It continues with unconscious biases. It was discovered that 40% of people think there’s a double-standard against hiring women — both men and women are more likely to hire men over women. Thus far, men are 30% more likely than women to be promoted from entry level to manager. The harsh reality is that corporate America is still trailing behind in the field of diverse recruiting, along with failing (in broad terms) to create and establish that of a heterogeneous workplace.

Employee engagement and a vital sense of inclusion are necessary components of the operational core of any company, and these factors are ultimately critical for its success. Since it’s proven to be financially rewarding to initiate a diverse workforce, it’s beneficial to understand how to attract these rewards.

Hiretalent, a New York-based staffing firm specializes in diverse recruiting and is acutely aware that one of the most efficient ways to bring fresh ideas and new concepts into an organization is to create a heterogeneous workforce. Hiretalent’s employees and staff? You guessed it. They’re comprised of a group of individuals with varied ethnicities, religions, genders, sexualities, and socioeconomic standings. This allows them to excel at finding and placing workers such as American veterans, women, and other underrepresented minorities in jobs throughout the United States. In turn, Hiretalent empowers individuals to make an impact on not only their own careers but the companies they’re recruited to as well. By using an organization such as this, you’re letting experts identify the departments that can be improved. This is a surefire way to find the most diverse group of people when considering all the qualified applicants your staffers might otherwise inadvertently pass over.

So how can corporate America change the hiring process? By outsourcing the task to a hiring firm that specializes in diverse recruiting. Otherwise, companies will have to rebuild their HR from within, which can be challenging. Unless a business is educated in diverse hiring, deeply rooted obstacles such as unconscious biases can creep in at any time and block results.

Recruiting from a diverse pool of candidates means a more qualified workforce. Companies that have supported the outdated policy of “don’t ask, don’t tell” are not only failing their shareholders, but also their employees. Due to the increasing criticism of the lack of diversity, companies are finding that they have no choice but to be transparent. In short, increasing workforce diversity isn’t just the right thing to do, it’s the smart thing to do.

MORE: How The Staffing Industry Can Increase Diversity and Inclusion

Shelby Welinder
Shelby Welinder is a journalist who has worked as a public relations consultant.

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