Eliminating employment discrimination and promoting diversity in the workplace should be paramount goals for employers today. Today, businesses that fail to adapt to the changing labor market and workforce could lack skilled workers and jeopardize their growth.
Business owners who care about their reputation, who want to remain competitive and do the right thing, must devote effort and resources to fighting discrimination and promoting diversity.
Below are five tips for eliminating discrimination and promoting diversity.
Learn About Your Legal Obligations
Study your legal obligations to fight discrimination and promote an inclusive workplace. Federal and provincial human rights laws prohibit any form of discrimination based on race, sex, ethnicity, age, disability, religion, marital status, sexual orientation, and more.
Adopting an anti-discrimination policy of this nature can help create a tolerant workplace. The policy should define discriminatory behavior, establish a mechanism for filing, reviewing, and documenting complaints of discrimination, and set out the steps to be taken in the event of an incident. A discrimination lawyer can also help you learn about all types of employment discrimination that can be claimed by the employees.
Eliminate Prejudices When Hiring
Review your hiring process to make it impartial. It is not uncommon for recruiters to – often unconsciously – be biased towards applicants with foreign-sounding names or whose resumes contain gaps in work history or foreign credentials or degrees.
One solution is to use anonymous recruiting, which means removing candidates' names and other identifying information from resumes. It can also be useful to hire a group of people rather than just one. Recruiting employees also need to learn to decipher non-traditional resumes and be familiar with foreign credentials and degrees. It is also important to assess candidates for the new skills they may bring to your business.
Adapt Your Reception and Integration Process
Review this process to make sure it is inclusive. A well-designed process promotes the onboarding of new employees and makes it clear that discrimination is not tolerated.
You should clearly state which acts are deemed to be wrongdoing and which constitute a form of harassment or discrimination and a danger to occupational health and safety. Help newcomers understand their rights. If you devote time to new employees upfront, they will be more confident, engaged, and productive in the long run.
Review Your Training Program and Policies
Your training programs should be designed according to the needs of different employees. For example, think about training for candidates who lack certain skills but who would otherwise be good employees.
Diversity training can also be useful for some key employees, such as supervisors and human resources staff. Regularly review your policies and monitor employee interactions to ensure they are adhering to them.
It can also be useful to measure your diversity results in terms of hiring and promoting – within your workforce and leadership team – women, visible minorities, individuals with disabilities, and native people.