How to Promote Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) in Your Company?
Most of us know that we need to diversify our workforce, but few know how to do it.
That’s why if you’re an employer and you want to promote DEI in your organization and create a happy workforce, you should follow our guide.
Our DEI guide will focus on what it is, why you need it, and how to promote it in your company.
What Is Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) in the Workplace?
Diversity is when an organization has employees with various characteristics, which include age, race, gender, religion, ethnicity, education, disabilities, sexual orientations, and other attributes.
Equity pertains to equality and fairness in outcomes. With equity, businesses identify and acknowledge the specific needs of their employees based on their demographics.
Meanwhile, inclusion is when all employees have the same access to resources and opportunities.
Many companies in Australia are now promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion.
For example, The ABS reported that 88% of their staff support Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. In addition, that 88% also actively promote a diverse culture in the workplace.
Why Do You Need To Promote DEI?
It’s crucial to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion because diverse workforce teams improve the following:
- Work culture
- Problem-solving skills
- Employee engagement
- Company’s success
- Company’s financial performance
Companies must do their part to reduce and eliminate judgment, racial bias, discrimination, and social injustice.
By using impactful strategies, they can have real and lasting change within their businesses, with employees who offer multiple exciting perspectives.
Ways To Promote DEI in the Workplace
To have a lasting organizational change, you need to take multiple measures.
Not only do you need to implement them, but you also need to ensure that they last in the company’s framework.
Here are some of the best ways to prompt DEI in the workplace.
1. Identify Unconscious Bias in Your Workplace
You won’t be able to remove your biases if you’re unaware of them, which is why it’s crucial to identify unconscious bias.
Employees must question, review, and analyze their biases and assumptions to identify unconscious bias in the workplace.
They can keep a journal to record cases of stereotyping so they’ll be aware of their biases. When the employees have uncovered those, they can replace and refute them.
You must also get all managers to do this; everyone in the workplace may have unconscious biases.
Also, you must be tactful when you do this, or you may cause workplace conflicts.
2. Integrate DEI Into Your Mission and Policies
It’s not enough to say that your organization promotes DEI. You should include it in your mission and values. Check your current policies to see if they encourage discrimination and bias, and alter or remove them if they do.
You may also create and implement new policies to reduce or eliminate judgment, racial bias, discrimination, and social injustice. Here are some examples of policies you can make:
- An anti-discrimination policy that stops employees from discriminating against others based on their gender, race, age, religion, or other characteristics. Ensure that you get across that you have zero tolerance for discrimination of any kind.
- A cultural diversity policy that acts as a mission statement for DEI in your company. It should get across your DEI goals and your commitment to those goals.
- A policy to show that you commit to equal opportunity and pay. The policy should also state that you will review pay gaps with race and gender yearly.
- A policy that states you will provide training for implicit bias in the workplace.
- A fair recruitment policy that states that you will make fair decisions when hiring new employees.
- A promotion policy states that you will seek to prioritize diversity when promoting employees.
3. Improve Job Descriptions and Recruiting Efforts 💻
Don’t be so strict on your job description and recruiting efforts.
According to a study from Harvard Business Review, men apply to positions where they meet 60% of the requirements. In comparison, women only apply to positions where they meet 100% of the qualifications. Because of that, you may lose candidates more deserving of the job.
You may also consider hiring people with disabilities or experienced retirees to expand your talent pool; they may be the ones your company needs.
4. Hold Diversity Training Sessions at Your Workplace 🎓
It’s vital to conduct recurring diversity training and education of employees. Doing this will improve the implementation of DEI in your workplace.
Besides using different resources, hire an expert to provide better training to everyone in the organization.
Let people know why you are conducting or organizing the training. For example, you can detail the issues your organization faces regarding DEI and the company’s plans to solve these issues.
Doing this will help people understand the importance of what you’re doing and might motivate them to contribute to the greater good.
5. Collect Data on Your Entire Workforce 📈
With data on the people in your workforce, it is easier to gauge the amount of work needed to include DEI in your company.
You can hand out detailed surveys to identify the demographic breakdown of your entire company. With this information, you can see the demographics you are underutilizing; some company employees can see this as discrimination by omission.
You can use the data as the first step to work out the problems regarding DEI in your company, whether it is recruitment, discrimination amongst the workforce, or something else.
6. Acknowledge Diverse Holidays
Source: The Australian HR Institute
Employees from different parts of the world have holidays they want to celebrate, and respecting those is essential. That’s why giving your staff flexible holidays they may use whenever they want would be wise.
Many massive companies are creating policies regarding accepting and including diverse holidays in the workplace.
For example, according to an Australian HR Institute Report, many companies, including the renewable energy company RES, are adopting policies to include diverse holidays on their schedule.
Consider your employees ‘ election days and holidays when scheduling projects, meetings, or other events.
7. Listen Actively to Feedback From Your Employees 👂
Even though you’re implementing measures to promote DEI, you won’t be able to guarantee it’s working unless you ask for feedback. Conduct surveys to know if you’re doing enough and ask for suggestions and recommendations.
You may also talk to them individually and ask them how they feel about the culture in the company. Make them feel that you are listening to them. Also, some of their criticisms may be about how you are dealing with DEI in the company and what you should do differently.
Tell them you will improve or make changes depending on their feedback.
8. Commit Your Entire Leadership Team to DEI
When rolling out new DEI policies across your company, you must start from the top and work down. If you don’t engage your leadership team, they won’t spread it to the workforce effectively.
Therefore, you need to know exactly how to commit your leadership team to DEI before you make moves to do so.
9. Involve the Company in DEI-Focused Community Outreach Projects
Our final tip is to inform your customer base about your commitment to DEI by supporting community outreach projects focusing on underrepresented communities in your area.
One option to do this is to do a company-wide project to support your community. Doing this involves the entire company and lets your local community know you support DEI.
Another idea is to offer your employees days off specifically for volunteering so they can focus on DEI community outreach projects. Many countries don’t widely offer this; 63% of UK employees don’t have this, according to a Perkbox survey.
Final Thoughts on the Best Ways to Promote DEI in Your Company
Integrate diversity, equity, and inclusion into all organizations to reduce discrimination and bias. Companies implementing DEI are also more likely to succeed in the long run.
You can successfully promote DEI in your business if you read and fully implement our tips.
For more advice on improving your company’s culture, you can find answers on Tommy.