Creating and maintaining an inclusive and diverse work environment is no longer a “nice to have”, it is essential. When you recognize the untapped potential of a diverse pool of talent and understand what they can bring to the table, not just for your company but for your customers as well, you will transform your organization and see growth like never before. Let’s talk about why that is.
Putting Untapped Talent to Work
When you actively and intentionally recruit professionals from a diverse talent pool, you are setting your company up for success. Professionals with disabilities possess a wide range of skills as they are innovative problem solvers who regularly create solutions to both everyday and big-picture problems. Having diverse talent on your team gives you access to the most creative and innovative minds out there.
Reaching an Underserved Market
With a diverse team, you will be able to better understand and cater to a diverse customer base. If you can foster an inclusive work environment, one that encourages your team to pull from and share their personal experiences and perspectives, you will be able to understand how to reach a market that was previously underserved. To put things into perspective a bit, this underserved market we are talking about is potentially 25% of the American population, as 1 in 4 Americans identify as having a disability. You need insider knowledge to help you understand and serve this population, who have been pushed aside or forgotten about for far too long.
So, how do you find and recruit diverse talent?
There are many ways to go about this – we could probably write 100 blogs on just this topic! But let’s stick to the basics for now.
Are your applications accessible?
In order to attract diverse talent, your content must be accessible. This may seem daunting, but it is a necessary step to ensure that people can apply to your company. You must first consider this: Can all people access, fill out, and submit the application? Before you say yes, consider that over 90% of all digital content is not accessible to people with disabilities. This means that, for a very large portion of the population, accessing and filling out applications online is either extremely difficult, or impossible.
Can you support diverse talent on your team?
Once you hire diverse talent, how are you going to support them? Retention, or lack thereof, is an very common issue when it comes to hiring diverse talent. Many organizations do not know how to support their diverse talent and help them succeed in the workplace. This may come down to a lack of communication or a difficult accommodation process. You must be able to provide your employees with reasonable accommodations so that they can succeed in the workplace. Establishing this process may take time, and a lot of communication. Make sure you listen to your employees. Ask them what they need to succeed, and do your best to make that happen.
Finding diverse talent
Make partnerships with organizations who find or train professionals with disabilities who are ready to join the workforce. There are organizations, like Ablr, that focus on creating pathways to employment for people with disabilities, you just need to talk to them!
Want to learn more about hiring diverse talent? Reach out to us on our Contact Page – we would love to chat!