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The Journal Gazette

Friday, November 11, 2016 10:23 am

Tips for managers looking to diversify the workforce

Lisa Green | The Journal Gazette

Companies benefit from diversity.

Eliot Burdett, co-founder and CEO of Peak Sales Recruiting, sent that reminder in an email this week. He referenced studies by MIT and global management consulting firm McKinsey & Co. that have shown a correlation between diverse workforces and increases in revenue. Beyond that, Burdett said in the email, some executives simply "see it as the right thing to do."

Burdett said his business has developed five tips to help companies attract more diversity. They are:

* Modernize corporate policies. One example would be to offer floating holidays, which women and millennials may especially like. That would allow employees to select, based on their religion or culture, a holiday they may prefer off to a more traditional observance.

* Recruit from a wide range of college campuses. This includes not just colleges across the country, but the world.

* Play the long game. "The biggest mistake companies make during the recruiting process is that they wait until they need to hire someone," the email said. "They key to recruiting is to always be recruiting so you are ready if someone unexpectedly quits or gets sick."

* Embrace a structured, rigorous and scientific hiring process. Based on subconscious bias, the hiring process may not always focus on skills and experience. 

* Go outside your own network. Professional organizations such as the National Black MBA Association, Urban League and National Council of La Raza, could be worth partnering with. Also, conferences, job fairs and networking events cater to diverse crowds.