One of the ways to amplify your impact (and increase your B-Corp score) is to have a diverse workforce. It’s one thing to hire diverse workers, but it’s another thing to have the ability to hire diverse workers who are the perfect candidates. Now I know you’re probably thinking “I’d love to have a diverse workforce, but I can’t find the right candidates in my area”. The solution to that is simple! Increase your technical capacity for your team to work from home by implementing the right IT solution. This way, your available talent pool grows exponentially. Advances in IT have enabled more diversity in the workplace by connecting remote workers across the country. Whether it’s finding talent across demographics from other states or hiring top candidates who may have restrictions for working in person. Innovations in IT are connecting employers with remote workers everywhere.
DIVERSIFYING YOUR HIRING WITH IT
There are a variety of ways that innovations in IT can help connect employers and remote workers. Virtual interview processes and technology that are designed to remove geography restrictions and automate/filter employment requirements are just a few innovations that can help. Streamlining your hiring process to be virtual allows your business to look further than the local area to attract the best talent. You can easily automate filtering candidates by needed attributes and send candidates through testing and other scenarios virtually to determine if they’ll be a good fit. Virtual hiring practices help to create a remote business culture, granting both employers and candidates more opportunities. When businesses require that the ability to go into an office every day be a qualification for employment, three specific groups are often put at a significant disadvantage.
PEOPLE WITH FAMILY CARE RESPONSIBILITIES (MAINLY WOMEN)
At the onset of the pandemic, a large portion of women left the labor force due to childcare facility closures and school closings. Regardless of whether or not it may be considered fair, family care responsibilities are largely shouldered by women in our culture (they’re superheroes… let’s be honest). Options for remote work have provided a partial solution to this gender discrepancy. It has been much easier, or maybe more possible to manage, for many to balance family and work responsibilities when one removes the challenges posed by daily commuting. Through this, there is a promising opportunity to get women back into the workforce, in a way that is flexible to their needs and that of their families.
INDIVIDUALS WITH ECONOMIC HOUSING LIMITATIONS
Before the pandemic, many people had unnecessarily long commutes due to the location and neighborhood in which they live. Should what street you live on really matter to employment opportunity? No. But it often does for a number of reasons. Many workers travelled long distances prior to the pandemic to go to work since they could not afford to live near the businesses they worked for. The fact that one’s house is located in a certain area may be considered an implicit qualification for employment, resulting in significant recruiting challenges for people from various demographic and socioeconomic categories. Again, by making work more accessible to such individuals, many more people are able to hold employment in more consistent and successful ways with the aid of remote IT solutions.
PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
Imagine being denied the ability to work for a personal circumstance out of your control. This is something numerous individuals with disabilities face when seeking options for long-term and stable employment.
1 in 4 people in the U.S. has a disability.
Many of these people face significant difficulties in their everyday lives because of their impairments, and commuting is a major barrier for many of them, especially those with severe disabilities. A trek from one end of the city to the other may be simple for an able-bodied individual, but it can be a tough job for someone with mobility difficulties due to mental, physical, or visual impairments. Even if they are not hindered in their capacity to execute job activities, they can be in their abilities to reliably and consistently commute. Allowing these individuals to work from home with an IT setup that is consistent with their needs is essential to providing equitable access to employment.
CREATING AN EMPATHETIC WORKFORCE THROUGH IT
If you’re looking to create and maintain an empathetic, diverse workforce, there are a variety of solutions that IT can provide. Emotional quotient, otherwise known as emotional intelligence, testing can be input into your hiring process virtually. Quizzes have been designed to help employers determine how emotionally intelligent candidates are. They can be tailored and customized to fit within your business’s current culture and help you identify appropriate cultural fits. You can also use customizable quizzes to determine attributes like collaborative ability. It can be hard to determine cultural fit when you’re looking at hiring remote employees, but while remote work gives many groups of people more opportunities to join the workforce, you want to be sure that everyone will work as one cohesive team. Testing and creating long-form behavioural interview-style questions can help to ensure that your business is hiring the right people for the right teams. If you need the answers to be disassociated with candidates to ensure that your reviewers are unbiased when looking at the results, that’s possible as well! You don’t have to worry about cultural fit, IT can help you manage that part of the application process.
Healthy work cultures value people based on what they offer, rather than where they sit in society. A hybrid remote work with the right IT setup can increase employee engagement, boost productivity & culture, lower carbon emissions during commuting, and allow for more inclusive and diverse businesses when done effectively.
“IT” can make the difference! I know, I know. Cheesy.