Today’s leaders are taking diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) very seriously. In fact, 53% of Fortune 500 companies have a Chief Diversity Officer in place (McKinsey) and 46% of the S&P 500 companies have folded DEI metrics into their executive incentive plans (Mercer).
However, even with the best intentions, many companies still lack the necessary tools and data needed to actually achieve their DEI goals. In another study it was reported that only 34% of companies have enough resources to actually support their DEI initiatives. (CultureAmp)
So, what will it take for leaders to achieve DEI goals with limited resources? Well, we may not have all the answers but we do have a few ideas for boosting the number of diverse candidates that come through the door. Through smart strategies, proper training and artificial intelligence (AI) technologies, companies can get help achieving some of their DEI goals faster and more efficiently than ever before.
Here are five easy-to-apply ways to leverage AI for help with DEI in your workforce:
1. Tap Into the Widest Talent Pool Possible
Looking for more diverse talent? Recruiting AI tools can help you find it. AI tools collect public information from multiple sources so that you can access a wider range of talent without spending hours searching every possible source for job candidates. LinkedIn is just one source, but if, for example, you are looking for engineers, more talent data can be found on sites like GitHub and StackOverflow. AI recruiting tools can collect talent data from a multitude of public sources, curate them into rich profiles and increase your chances of finding the right talent for open roles, which include diverse talent.
2. Set Benchmarks for DEI Initiatives
Sure, you may know the diversity make-up of your workforce, but do you know if it is above or below your industry standards? To set reasonable diversity goals for your company, you will need to evaluate your situation and compare it to your industry. Recruiting AI tools enable you to measure your workforce diversity across a variety of key performance indicators (KPIs) and compare it to your industry peers. In addition to viewing the percentage of your employees from underrepresented groups, you can use AI to analyze how your company compares to others by looking at KPIs such as internal mobility, participation in managerial roles, average tenure and risk of churn among diverse employees.
3. Fix Your Process
AI can eliminate descriptors from job candidates’ profiles, allowing companies to select talent purely based on their merits. These tools look at a multitude of parameters to help identify the most qualified candidate, without looking at factors like names and pictures that could potentially lead to unconscious bias. Taking the time to conduct unconscious bias training can help ensure you are choosing candidates fairly.
In addition, you need to establish specific diversity goals. Hold your company accountable for such goals, but also set a process to identity diversity hiring roadblocks. Your recruiters may do a great job bringing in diverse talent for interviews just to be blocked by hiring managers in the next stage. If you have an analysis of your hiring funnel, you will know the specific stages that negatively impact your diverse hiring.
4. Know Your Diversity & Recruiting Data
When pushing your team to meet their diversity hiring goals, you will often hear that “there isn’t enough diverse talent for some open roles.” This is often not true; companies just lack data. AI can tell you how many qualified candidates are available for each open role, including the percentage of each diversity group. If the pool is indeed small, work with your hiring managers to tweak your job descriptions to ensure an equitable hiring process. AI tools allow you to run hundreds of variations of one job search and recommend small changes in the job requirements to result in a greater participation of diverse talent in your hiring pipeline.
5. Train Everyone to Embrace AI
If you are preparing to implement AI in your diverse hiring strategy, make sure everyone is equipped with the right tools and is fully trained on how to use them. Here are some tips:
- Explain to your employees how AI works and how it can help them be more successful in their role. There may be a fear of AI-enabled tools as potential replacements for human jobs. However, the technologies described in this article are likely to empower employees to do their jobs more efficiently and intelligently. Often, knowledge removes fear.
- Incentivize employees for their use of AI tools, especially for achieving positive results from using such tools. Share successes with everyone.
- Make training continuous. People tend to forget how to use technological tools over time and become less proficient, ultimately abandoning their use. If you want employees to use such tools, establish a quarterly training cadence to continue to build their confidence using the technologies.
- Choose “change agents:” Implementing any new technology can be difficult, but some people are more open to trying new things. If you choose “early adopters” to be the first users of your AI tools, their colleagues are likely to be more motivated to use these tools as well based on their colleagues’ success.
RELATED: Guide on How to Increase Diversity in Your Workforce Through AI Technology
Data and advanced analytics are transforming how companies do business. In the area of talent sourcing and retention, AI tools are becoming mature and increasingly common at a growing number of companies. Here’s where Paycor Smart Sourcing can help. Paycor Smart Sourcing taps into the world’s largest database of passive candidates (1.5 billion profiles) and contacts the best candidates for every role. And, Paycor Smart Sourcing shortens time-to-hire by finding both active and passive job seekers, including diverse candidates who are often missed by traditional methods. In the end, creating a diverse, equitable and inclusive workforce is not only the right thing to do, but it’s good for business, too.