The Diversity Think Tank (DTT), a subgroup of the HR Think Tank Series (HRTT), combines the intelligence of top diversity experts and reports that often, an unrepresentative workforce can be a reflection of candidates deselecting themselves based on preconceived brand perceptions. With diversity being an ever growing issue on the HR agenda, the DTT, facilitated by Oasis HR, looks beyond common explanations for understanding why certain companies lack a diverse workforce.
The DTT, a networking forum for diversity thought-leaders, acknowledged that whilst it’s easy to place blame on employers for failing to recruit individuals from outside their ‘usual demographic’, rightly or wrongly, focus should additionally be applied to the individual for self-excluding. What organisations often find is that depending on the nature / industry of their business, candidates will self-exclude based on a preconceived perception of the brand and a fear of not fitting in.
DTT members suggest that businesses need to take a step back to understand what employees are saying about the brand, the competitions’ opinion and then contrast this with how the organisation views itself. It was agreed that only after making this initial assessment, can the employer begin to tackle the issue of attracting diverse talent when perhaps a stigma exists around their brand.
Jeremy Thornton, co-founder of the HR Think Tank Series and Director of Oasis HR comments:
“Attracting diverse talent into any business can be a challenging endeavour, especially when a stigma exists around the perceived ‘ideal candidate’ for a given company. Whether we’re talking a retail company being perceived as more ‘suited’ to young females, or a law firm being considered the ideal employer for white middle-aged men, there’s clearly an ideal to be challenged. Our DTT members are absolutely right, understanding employees’, competitors’ and the business’ perception of the brand is crucial to deciphering why certain candidates might self-exclude from the recruitment process.
At Oasis HR, we’re very much up-to-date with our clients’ / HRTT members’ challenges and a trend we’re beginning to see is diversely-opposite businesses partnering from a recruitment perspective to work in conjunction with getting their talent attraction strategies right. It’s certainly my opinion that thinking outside the box and being innovative with recruitment is the best way to attract that top diverse talent.”