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4 Reasons DEI Should Dominate Your Recruitment Strategy In 2024

We examine why diversity, equity, and inclusion should be the top priority for your company's recruitment strategy in 2024.

Rebecca Barnatt-Smith, Content Manager @ Solvid

by Rebecca Barnatt-Smith, Content Manager @ Solvid - May 6th, 2024


85% of employers and hiring managers say increasing workplace diversity is a priority. Still, less than half (46%) have implemented recruitment programs or initiatives to attract a diverse workforce.

Let's take a look at the reasons diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) should be the top priority for your company's recruitment strategy in 2024:

1. It widens the candidate pool 

76% of job seekers value a diverse workforce when evaluating job opportunities and companies, so you'll likely see an increase in applicants if your company actively focuses on DEI hiring best practices. 

Using job boards where diverse candidates congregate helps your company reach previously untapped talent and allows a diverse range of job seekers to see your available positions.

In your job descriptions, consider mentioning inclusive benefits, such as Halal snacks being available in the office, time off for religious holidays, and tailored health insurance plans.

Miranda Collard, Global Chief Client Officer at Teleperformance, said, "Businesses should be proactive about going out and finding diverse candidates. This process begins with job descriptions.” 

“One of the first ways candidates interact with your company is through listings. To attract diversity, be sure that your descriptions are inclusive, encouraging a diverse pool of candidates to apply."

In addition, 48% of Gen Z's are racial or ethnic minorities, meaning the most racially and ethnically diverse generation yet are the ones entering the workforce in 2024.

Download our free DEI Policy Template

2. It encourages innovation and engagement

When companies prioritize DEI hiring right from the recruitment phase, they create a workplace environment that encourages collaboration, innovation, and engagement. 

74% of millennials believe their organization fosters innovation when an inclusive culture exists, and 83% are actively engaged when they feel the organization fosters an inclusive culture.

DEI hiring practices promote a sense of belonging in the workplace and encourage employees from diverse backgrounds to feel included and heard. Employees who feel included within a company are about three times more likely than their peers to feel excited by and committed to in-house missions, enhancing employee engagement.

3. It increases company profits 

As we've just explored, diversity drives innovation and engagement - both of which drive profitability. Organizations that embrace open innovation were found to have a 59% higher rate of revenue growth than those that don't.

Desmund Adams, CEO of Focus & Find, said: "Considering diverse workforces are twice as likely to meet or exceed their financial goals if you're falling down on this point, your shareholders should be mad. The fact is, businesses can wield enormous power to effect social change, far more than government regulation or mandates in my opinion. Capitalism rewards ideas that generate higher profitability. And research proves that diversity does just that."

In addition, a 2018 study found that companies with diverse management teams had, on average, a 19% increase in revenue compared to companies with less diverse management teams. This highlights the importance of considering diverse employees for internal promotions in a DEI hiring strategy.

4. It enhances brand reputation 

Furthermore, as companies actively promote DEI, extending these values to their online presence becomes crucial.

A well-designed and accessible website not only reflects a commitment to inclusivity but also ensures a positive digital experience for diverse audiences. This resonates powerfully with current and potential employees, stakeholders, and consumers alike improving both your employer's reputation and your brand’s digital PR strategy.

59% of consumers say it's important that the companies they buy from actively promote diversity and inclusion in their mission statement. Therefore, in order for a brand to improve its digital PR game externally, its internal values should naturally align with DEI hiring practices.

A positive brand reputation not only increases sales, customer loyalty, and brand growth but can also attract top talent. This could give you a competitive edge when top talent prospects receive multiple job offers.

DEIhiring should be a key priority in 2024 if you want access to a broader talent pool, increase employee innovation and engagement, generate higher profits, and enhance your brand reputation.

Businesses must cultivate DEI hiring practices and onboarding programs that focus on hiring those traditionally underrepresented in their workforce, making them feel included, and offering them fair opportunities.

How To Improve DEI Hiring In The Workplace

Diversity in the workplace refers to having staff of different abilities, ages, genders and gender identities, races and ethnicities, skills, and sexual orientations. Here's how to improve diversity hiring in the workplace:

  • Having a diverse hiring team will make it easier to hire diverse employees due to affinity bias - an unconscious bias that attracts people to others with similar qualities or viewpoints.

  • Using a blind hiring process helps you focus on qualifications and skills without letting names and other identifying factors affect who gets invited to interviews. One study found that those with distinctively white names received significantly more interview callbacks than those with distinctively BAME names.

  • Gather statistics on the diversity you currently have in your workforce and let underrepresented groups guide your DEI hiring methods.

  • Using a culture contribution approach means new employees bring something to the company culture while still aligning with your core values. This is better than a culture fit approach, insinuating new employees should fit in with established workplace culture.

  • Improving your job descriptions is essential if you want to echo your DEI hiring strategy to recruits. If you want to prioritize DEI hiring within the workplace, your job descriptions must echo that. They should be unbiased and detail how your company aims to strive for improved inclusion, equity and diversity within the team.

Equity in the workplace means that all employees are given fair and impartial opportunities to succeed, with the barriers and advantages different employees have in mind. Here's how to improve equity in your DEI hiring strategy:

  • Provide employees with individualized career plans and development opportunities based on where they are now. 

  • Establish salary guidelines and pay bands to offer equitable salaries for different positions. In 2022, the median weekly earnings of full-time working women equaled just 83% of that of men.

  • Consider diversity when offering internal promotions to keep your diverse employees from being stuck in entry-level or lower positions.

Inclusion in the workplace means that all employees feel a sense of belonging within the company and don't feel like they're a token to make the company seem more diverse. Here are some ways to improve inclusion when prioritizing DEI hiring:

  • Create an inclusion policy for your company and address known issues that have prevented inclusion for your employees in the past.

  • Improve company culture to create an environment where everyone feels safe and valued.

  • Make employee benefits more compatible for a diverse workforce. Consider offering flexible bank holidays so employees can have time off for holidays they choose to celebrate (for example, Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha) and choosing private health insurance plans that benefit LGBTQ+ employees.

  • Create a supportive onboarding program for new DEI hires, which includes assigning mentors so they can learn about the company culture from the people who know it best.

  • Honor differences and make it easier for people to be themselves. For example, if you offer free snacks to employees, include Kosher or Halal snacks.

What Does DEI Hiring Mean to Your Company?

Understanding what groups are underrepresented within your workforce is essential before you implement DEI hiring programs and initiatives. 

You'll be better equipped to adapt your DEI hiring process if you fully understand where the opportunities for change are by looking back at hiring data and trends.

Are there dominant groups of the same gender, religion, or age? Are there backgrounds or voices that need to be represented?

In addition, consider creating a client profile to determine your target audience. You can't sell products or services that appeal to Jewish women or men in the LGBTQ+ community without people from those groups in your workforce.

Final Thoughts

Diversity, equity, and inclusion practices must dominate your recruitment strategy in 2024 if you want to reap the benefits and witness enhanced business outcomes. When you prioritize DEI hiring practices, you quickly become more inviting to a wider talent pool.

However, businesses must showcase their commitment to creating a diverse, fair, and inclusive work environment throughout - not just during the hiring process.

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