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Want to attract more qualified candidates? Prioritize diversity

To gain an improved cohort of candidates, businesses need to sharpen up their diversity policies, according to a new survey.

A candidate is interviewed at a job interview. Image: Alan Cleaver via Wikipedia (CC BY 2.0)
A candidate is interviewed at a job interview. Image: Alan Cleaver via Wikipedia (CC BY 2.0)

While many companies turned their logos to rainbows to recognize and support the LGBTQ+ community this June for the 2021 Pride month, only half (55 percent) of LGBTQ+ workers feel that their company is committed to diversifying its workforce. This is according to a new survey.

These data come from Jobcase, a social platform dedicated to empowering and advocating for workers. Jobcase conducted a ‘State of the Diverse Worker’ survey to explore opinions about diversity in the workplace from minority groups, including LGBTQ+ members.

The survey was drawn from responses received from 815 workers, accessed through the Qualtrics platform during June 2021.

From the survey responses, while a sizeable number were concerned by what their company did in practice, a majority said that reviewing company policies about diversity is an important factor when seeking employment. In relation to this, 84 percent of LGBTQ+ respondents considered a company’s policies around supporting a diverse and inclusive workplace when looking for work. In terms of other important groups, the focus on the importance of policies was shared by 78 percent of people of color and 74 percent of women.

One reason for focusing on policies was because 54 percent of LGBTQ+ respondents said they have experienced discrimination in the workplace. To add to this, 46 percent of women say they have experienced discrimination in the workplace compared with 32 percent of men.

Furthermore, 46 percent of people of color, and, more specifically, 45 percent of Black people say they have also experienced discrimination within the workplace.

In contrast to the high proportion who are assessing the suitability of policies, those groups less likely to consider an employer’s diversity efforts when seeking work were men (60 percent), and specifically white men (52 percent).

Moreover, just 24 percent of white men look to work for companies that have openly LGBTQ+ executives and only 27 percent of white men seek organizations with people of color in leadership positions.

According to Gerry Brun, head of member product at Jobcase: “This study shows us that diversity, equity and inclusion are not just buzzwords but are actually key tenets of good corporate practice.2

As well as the presence of appropriate policies, a large proportion, at 63 percent of LGBTQ+ respondents, stated they look to work for companies that have openly LGBTQ+ executives/leadership.

This was not only for personal reasons for 63 percent of LGBTQ+ respondents said they believe diversity gives companies a competitive advantage.

While the overall trend is encouraging, there is more that can be done. For example, companies that seek improvements to recruitment and retention by improving diversity policies.

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Written By

Dr. Tim Sandle is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for science news. Tim specializes in science, technology, environmental, business, and health journalism. He is additionally a practising microbiologist; and an author. He is also interested in history, politics and current affairs.

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