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Navigating the Path to Diversity in Hiring

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Like eating the proverbial elephant, successfully navigating the path to diversity requires a series of small
steps rather than a single leap. It is a journey that combines people, processes, and technology across a wide
range of topics, each with its own challenges and rewards.
During this session, we will explore the rich landscape of hiring and how to blaze a trail to an unbiased,
diverse program: from communication and candidate experience, to qualifications, candidate evaluations,
assessments, and finally candidate selection. We will define goals, tactics and techniques, along with insights
on how to effect change within your organizations.
Join us as we map a step-by-step path to a more diverse and inclusive hiring program.

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Navigating the Path to Diversity in Hiring

  1. 1. 1 Position the interviewee so that their back is NOT to the door Tip for Inclusive Hiring • Avoids accidently startling candidates • Back to the door raises anxiety and discomfort for those who: • Experience anxiety when startled • Are deaf so cannot hear someone entering • Have been trained never to have their back to the door (military, law enforcement, etc.) Credit: Melissa Dobbins, CEO Career.Place Most appreciated by: Veterans Disabilities Abuse / PTSD
  2. 2. 2 Remove (or define) business jargon in the hiring process Tip for Inclusive Hiring • Terminology tests knowledge of terminology, which is usually irrelevant and/or trainable • Creates disadvantage for those who are: • Veterans • Shifting careers • New into a career • Struggling to break into an industry/career for unrelated reasons Credit: Melissa Dobbins, CEO Career.Place Most appreciated by: Veterans Career shifts Disabilities
  3. 3. 3 Credit: Samantha McLaren, Author, D&I Advocate Not sure about a name or gender? Ask, don’t guess Tip for Inclusive Hiring • Asking shows you care, guessing risks putting candidate in an awkward position to correct you • Names don’t match between documents – email, driver's license, etc. • Ask if name is unfamiliar or you don’t know how to pronounce it • If you don’t know, ask what pronoun to use • consider how a candidate would feel if you guess and you are wrong • Don’t ask for “preferred pronoun” – it is not a preference, it just is Most appreciated by: LGBT+ Ethnicities
  4. 4. 4 Choose a single, wheelchair-accessible location for the interview Tip for Inclusive Hiring • Don’t force candidates to start the interview asking for help • Ensure all candidates are entering the building through an accessible entrance and accessible route to the interview location • Interviewers should meet the candidate at the single interview location • Needing reasonable accommodation indicates “not designed for me” Credit: Melissa Dobbins, CEO Career.Place Most appreciated by: Disabilities Veterans Mobility
  5. 5. 5 Credit: Alisha West, Operations Coordinator, Business Ending Slavery & Trafficking (BEST) Ask the interviewee if he or she prefers to keep the door open or closed during the interview Tip for Inclusive Hiring • Not everyone is comfortable being in an enclosed private environment with someone they don’t know • Increases discomfort / anxiety for: • Those with specific religious beliefs and/or practices that prohibit being alone with someone of the opposite sex • Those who have experienced certain dramas, abuse, or victims of sex trafficking • Keep the door open or giving the option shows candidates there is nothing to fear Most appreciated by: Victims Religions
  6. 6. 6 Avoid assuming genders of significant others in conversation Tip for Inclusive Hiring • Avoid assuming gender when speaking about significant others / partners / spouses • If you guess wrong – candidate will be forced between two potentially uncomfortable options: • If correcting: candidate is forced to disclose their sexual preferences • If not correcting: candidate is forced to ‘hide’ their sexual preference • Note: NEVER ask about significant others / partners / spouses – that is illegal Most appreciated by: LGBT+ Credit: Melissa Dobbins, CEO Career.Place
  7. 7. 7 Credit: Julie Sowash, Sr. Consultant, Disability Solutions Verify physical “must haves” for a job are REALLY must haves Tip for Inclusive Hiring • Establish a clear reason for the necessity of every physical requirement • Regularly review the requirements to ensure they are still relevant to the position • Are there other ways to achieve a physical goal such as • Assigning to other team members • Using devices or machinery to help • Accomplishing tasks another way Most appreciated by: Disabilities Genders
  8. 8. 8 Credit: Julie Sowash, Sr. Consultant, Disability Solutions Don’t assume mental or cognitive impairments when someone has a physical disability Tip for Inclusive Hiring • Speak the same way to those with physical disabilities as those without • Adjust interaction only if required • Note: It is common courtesy to ask someone if they need help such as by removing obstacles Most appreciated by: Disabilities
  9. 9. 9 Prepare a FAQ to answer all those questions your candidates won’t ask, but really need to know Tip for Inclusive Hiring • Asking certain questions could put candidates at a perceived or real disadvantage. For example: • Maternity or paternity policies • Availability of nursing rooms or prayer rooms • Medical leave policies • Draft an FAQ to answer questions without singling out any candidates Most appreciated by: Parenthood Religions Disabilities Credit: Melissa Dobbins, CEO Career.Place
  10. 10. 10 Don’t limit culture description to happy hours and holiday parties Tip for Inclusive Hiring • Using non-work-related activities to describe culture may be unintentionally alienating individuals • Consider how ‘happy hours and holiday parties’ sounds to those who don’t drink alcohol or those with after-hour obligations • Social rarely are required for success on a job or for an individual to ‘fit in’ with the culture • If listing social activities, add terms like ‘optional’ • Add variety to example events, such as pot-lucks, volunteer days, and family picnics to show inclusion Most appreciated by: Parenthood Religions Disabilities Credit: Melissa Dobbins, CEO Career.Place

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