The business case for inclusive hiring practices

June 24th, 2021
HireVue Team
Diversity & Inclusion

Fostering an inclusive workplace—where everyone feels that they belong—starts at the top and trickles down to every other part of an organization. In the words of Vernā Myers, VP of Inclusion Strategy at Netflix, “Diversity is being invited to the party; inclusion is being asked to dance.” 

According to Myers, without inclusion, diversity just doesn’t stick. 

There’s no question that in the 21st century, diversity is a business imperative. McKinsey’s Why Diversity Matters shows that companies with gender, racial, and ethnic diversity are more likely to profit financially than the national industry median, outperforming their less diverse competitors.

But what happens when diverse talent exits an organization because they don’t feel like they belong? If you’re a business leader who wants to enhance your employee experience, and improve your bottom line, start by prioritizing inclusive hiring.

Why diversity alone will never pay off

1. Without inclusive hiring, you’ll miss out on the best talent.

What differentiates an industry leader from the competition? Its people. According to Gallup, there’s never been a greater need to maximize human capital.

While competitive salaries and benefits are important, they are not enough to convince today’s - much less tomorrow’s - employees to remain in a work environment that is not inclusive. A 2020 Glassdoor survey shows that an overwhelming majority of today’s job seekers are specifically seeking out employers who prioritize diversity and inclusion when applying for jobs.

Modern job candidates want to be a part of a culture that demonstrates equity, transparency, and acceptance. And if you’re not providing that, just remember - your competitor probably is.

2. Inclusive hiring transforms productivity & innovation

So as these younger, more diverse generations begin infiltrating the workforce, more and more business leaders have a sense of urgency to create an inclusive culture that not only attracts employees—but also inspires them to stay.

And for good reason. Deloitte’s research reveals that an inclusive workplace inspires innovation and drives productivity by 20%. Organizations with an inclusive culture were 6X more likely than their less-inclusive peers to be innovative and agile, and 8X more likely to boast better business performance.

Why? When employees feel that they belong, but also have permission to speak, think, and act freely as a unique individual, creativity soars.

Deloitte’s research goes on to show that leadership behaviors impact those feelings of safety and belonging by up to 70 percentage points. It’s up to managers and executives to foster a listening environment, embrace diverse viewpoints, and alter company culture and behaviors to align with the needs of your diverse employees. 

3. Inclusive hiring impacts customer retention

A 2019 CareerBuilder Survey shows that when job candidates have a negative experience, many of them will not only stop buying from the company as a consumer - they’ll also tell their family and friends. 

But when they do feel valued and respected throughout the hiring process, even if they’re not hired into the role for which they applied, 56% of candidates will consider applying for the same company in the future, 37% will tell others to apply, and 23% will be more likely to purchase products or services from the company. 

And as for the candidates who are hired into the organization, they go from candidates who feel included to employees who feel included - and they naturally pass on that sense of belonging to any customers with whom they interact. A Harvard Business Review study even found that when an employee shares a commonality with a customer, the entire company better understands the customer.

By demonstrating inclusive practices during the hiring process, organizations are able to nurture connections with their customers - both the customers their new team members interact with, and the customers who are candidates.

Inclusive hiring, better business

When hiring is inclusive, everybody wins.

At HireVue, we believe that increasing DEI starts with dismantling biases in the hiring process, from end-to-end, one step at a time; and that doing so is one of the most powerful ways to create economic opportunities that result in a more equitable and just society.

Not sure what comes next? Learn more about actionable DEI in our complete guide to improving equity in hiring. Or request a demo today to find out how HireVue can help you improve the way you discover, engage, and hire talent.