At Harrison Holgate we believe that to build and sustain a diverse and inclusive organisation D&I needs to be driven from Board level down and integrated into every core people process. We are critically aware of our role in this and regularly monitor our placement levels to track our own involvement. In one of our latest reviews for example we showed that during Q1 2020 39% of the people placed within just one of our business units met D&I criteria.
Increasingly, employers are recognising the business benefits of improving diversity and inclusion within their workforce. This is from the top down, with diverse boards making diverse decisions and so on. By recruiting individuals from a range of backgrounds, be it gender, age, ethnicity or sexuality, businesses gain access to a far wider variety of views and perspectives and this will impact productivity in a positive way.
First recognising the obstacles and then taking steps to attract diverse candidates is a key factor in developing a diverse workforce. For example this might include writing job adverts so the language doesn’t discourage certain candidates from applying. However, history suggests we often tend to hire and promote in our “own image”, looking for people who are “like us” or share our own views or attributes. This is a form of unconscious bias and whilst not intentional can often influence perception of what a “successful person” is.
Just looking at this one area, unconscious bias can have a serious underlying effect on hiring decisions when recruiting for your business. At Harrison Holgate we believe there are a number of different approaches that can be used to reduce this, including:
- Assessing blind CVs (removing certain information like gender and name, where someone was educated and possibly even the names of the companies they have worked for)
- Peer Reviewing candidate information for discussion or even sharing prospective information with certain stakeholders for their views
- Anti-bias training to approach recruitment more objectively
We believe there are many things that can be done to allow employers to develop a workforce with a broad range of backgrounds. We truly believe in embracing this approach and see many examples of the benefits from bringing in new ideas and development of highly productive workforces.
When approaching each project and to assist with D&I we will follow a structured process:
- Defining the Vacancy and search criteria
- Discussing and agreeing how best to advertise and market the vacancy
- Agreeing parameters for the filtering and submission of candidate data with D&I objectively in focus
- Agreeing with a client the type of interview process and style of interview to allow candidates the freedom to demonstrate their suitability
For more information about our D&I and Equal Opportunities policy please click here