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    How Jobseekers Can Combat Pregnancy Discrimination in the Hiring Process

    Moms are a major part of the workforce at about one-third of employed women. It’s reasonable to assume many women will go through the application and hiring process while pregnant. Although family planning can add some complexities, it should not dictate the job search. 

    One concern of expectant mothers is bias against that from hiring managers, even if they’re the most qualified candidate. You may think “Who wants to hire someone that’s going to need 3-4 months off within the first year of their employment?” This is a legitimate concern. It might be difficult to imagine a company willing to do this. But the truth is, there are — and you are capable of approaching this process.

    To hear from women who have dealt with this firsthand, we asked the SheCanCode community about disclosing pregnancy during the job search. SheCanCode is a global community on a mission to close the tech gender gap. Most expressed concern based on personal experiences. One member said, “I would not feel comfortable disclosing a pregnancy to a potential employer. I am currently in the job market and also undergoing IVF. I feel that disclosing this to a potential employer would immediately jeopardize a potential offer. If a job was offered, I would be fearful of being within the probationary period and that I wouldn’t be entitled to full maternity cover, should I lose my role within the probationary period.”

    While this is a common worry, pregnancy discrimination is illegal. If you’re trying to conceive or are pregnant while seeking employment, it’s essential to know your rights and look for the following signs of discrimination. Use this guide to empower you on your career journey.

    Understand the Protections for Pregnant Women

    The Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, and national origin. Over the years, two additional amendments strengthened the legislation.

    First, in 1978, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA) amendment required employers to treat pregnancy using the same rules applied to other short-term disability cases. 

    Then, in 1993, with the passage of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), new parents became eligible for 12 weeks of unpaid leave to care for a new child. To qualify, an employee had to work for the employer for 12 months. This rule applies to businesses with 50 employees or more.

    The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission enforces these laws. Most states have additional rules to combat pregnancy discrimination in hiring and the workplace.

    Recognizing Pregnancy Discrimination

    The PDA not only protects pregnant women, but recent mothers as well. It also covers discrimination based on medical conditions caused by pregnancy or childbirth. 

    It’s important you know what discrimination may look like during the application, hiring, and onboarding stage of a new job. A nerve-wracking aspect of job searching might be telling your new employer that you’re pregnant once hired (another phase when discrimination can occur).

    To further your understanding, here are a few examples of pregnancy discrimination:

    Refusing to hire pregnant applicants 

    If a candidate can perform their job, an employer cannot refuse to hire a woman because of pregnancy. It’s also against the law to ask a candidate about her childbearing plans. So do not feel like you need to answer any questions related to family planning during the recruitment process. However, employers may ask when and how often a candidate is available to work.

    Failing to modify duties

    Pregnancy is not a disability. But according to the law, employers must apply the same rules to pregnant workers as employees who are temporarily disabled. A pregnant employee may need to modify her job, for example, sitting rather than standing. Employers must make the same accommodations they would for any other employee with a short-term disability. So don’t worry if an aspect of the job may become difficult later in your pregnancy. 

    Withholding maternity leave 

    If a company allows an injured employee to take disability leave or unpaid leave, it must do the same for a pregnant employee. After a pregnancy-related absence, employers must hold open a job for the same amount of time they are held open for employees on disability leave. In other words, you can’t be fired after coming back from your maternity leave (without other due cause). 

    Offering inadequate health coverage 

    Making sure you have the right health insurance when starting a new job while pregnant can be stressful. While you don’t want to disclose that you’re pregnant, you also want to ensure you have adequate coverage. 

    Employers must provide health insurance coverage for pregnancy-related conditions in the same manner as other medical expenses. The Affordable Care Act, passed in 2010, prohibits insurers from declining to cover pregnancy as a pre-existing condition. 

    Regardless of your policy, it’s crucial to do your research. As HealthMarkets explains, “Maternity care is an essential health benefit, and all qualified health plans must cover it, even if you are pregnant before your coverage takes effect.” They recommend checking the Summary of Benefits and Coverage Page which will detail costs of pregnancy both before and after birth. While in the offer phase of a job, ask to view documentation for a company’s health plans and ask if they have any type of waiting period before coverage takes effect. 

    Firing you for being pregnant 

    The PDA prohibits discrimination based on pregnancy for any aspect of employment, including termination. So a company cannot fire you based on the fact you’re pregnant. There must be some other valid reason.

    FAQs About Job Hunting While Pregnant

    Don’t let some of the challenges the job search might pose discourage you. Here are frequently asked questions about launching a successful job hunt while pregnant.

    Do I have to tell potential employers I’m pregnant?

    There is no legal obligation to tell potential employers you’re pregnant. Moreover, candidates in their first trimester generally keep this information to themselves.

    Okay, I know I don’t have to disclose, but should I?

    It depends. If it’s early in the pregnancy and you’re not showing, you could wait until you’re a final candidate or receive an offer. If you’re in your second or third trimester and visibly pregnant, it might be obvious when you come in for an interview. Just remember that you’re under no obligation to discuss this during the interview process. 

    How should I facilitate a conversation with my potential employer, should I choose to disclose? 

    When the time is right, it helps to have a plan to disclose your pregnancy with an employer. If you disclose while interviewing, mention that you’ll manage your projects, so your leave will cause minimal impact. Emphasize your commitment to the job and that you intend to return after the maternity leave.

    To address any concern about work, reassure management you love your job and look forward to picking up right where you left off upon returning.

    Moreover, don’t stress out too much. Remember, companies want to hire you for the long haul, and make an investment in your future with their organization. A supportive employer with the right mindset won’t see a few months leave as an insurmountable issue. If you frame your pregnancy as exciting news (you’re expecting!), a good employer will more than likely be happy to hear about this new chapter in your life.   

    Can I take maternity leave immediately after starting a job?

    This depends on your employment situation. Under the FMLA, you’re not eligible for leave until 12 months of employment. However, many companies have individual maternity policies, so speak to the HR team to understand those. 

    Additionally, employers must treat pregnancy like any other disability. So if other employees are allowed to return after a short-term disability, you would be as well. You’re entitled to the time off your doctor advises for recovery. (Typically 6-8 weeks depending on your birth.) 

    How can I assess how supportive a company is of working parents? 

    For parents, the definition of a good job includes a family-friendly culture. Here are a few clues that indicate a company with a good work-life balance.

    Look for family-friendly words: If the company description or job post mentions words like “family-friendly,” “work-life balance,” or “flexibility,” that’s a good sign.

    Check the benefits: See if the ad mentions childcare, comprehensive insurance coverage, help with adoption, or other family-related benefits.

    Note the responsibilities: Pay attention to the percent of travel required and if long hours or weekend work is mentioned.

    Be observant in interviews: Ask questions about a typical workday. Do they have flexible work schedules that include remote work? You can also ask about the work culture and current employees to get a sense if other parents enjoy working there. 

    Last year, theSkimm’s #ShowUsYourLeave campaign launch sparked a flood of opinions and personal stories around parental leave, garnering 1,000 hashtag followers on LinkedIn. Progressive companies took this opportunity to showcase their generous policies (see Hired’s here). The campaign’s success proved leave as a point of interest, validating it as demand from jobseekers and an opportunity for companies to support employees and attract talent. 

    Related: Check out employers like theSkimm on Hired’s 2022 List of Top Employers Winning Tech Talent 

    Overcoming Pregnancy Discrimination While Job Hunting

    Even though it’s illegal, pregnancy discrimination is, unfortunately, still prevalent. According to survey data, 20% of moms report they have experienced pregnancy discrimination at work.  

    Conducting a job search while pregnant might not be ideal timing, but many women have successfully done so. Try to start early in your pregnancy, when possible. Become informed on your rights so you can confidently navigate the job search. Look for a family-friendly company. Most importantly, don’t worry! Not only is stress bad for an expectant mother, but the law protects you and you should be treated with respect and courtesy throughout this process. 

    Happy job hunting and family planning! 

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    Should You Disclose a Disability During Your Job Search? The Complete Guide

    Searching for a new job can be a stressful, anxiety-inducing process for anyone. If you’re one of the 61 million U.S. adults (26% of the population) who lives with a disability, a job search can be even more complex and worrisome.

    Are you legally required to share information about your disability in the first place? Can employers opt to pass over your candidacy due to a disability? When is the best time to disclose your disability during the application and interview process? How specific do you have to get?

    These are just some of the many questions that might be passing through your mind as you think about applying for your next job. 

    Luckily, being prepared is half the battle. By researching what to expect during the process, you can take some of the pressure out of applying for a job with a disability.

    What types of disability forms will I come across during my job search?

    The most common disability form you’ll encounter during your job search is the Voluntary Self-Identification of Disability form issued by the Office of Management and Budget. 

    A disability form is a government-required step in the application process for a company in order to provide equal employment opportunities for those with disabilities. In the United States, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission enforces Federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. An equal opportunity employer is one that pledges to not discriminate against employees based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetic information. Therefore, companies ask — but do not require — applicants to fill out this form.

    In a nutshell, this form explains the reasoning behind requesting the information, tells you which conditions qualify as disabilities, and gives you three options for answers: 

    Yes, I have a disability or have a history/record of having a disabilityNo, I don’t have a disability or a history/record of having a disabilityI don’t wish to answer

    Do I need to disclose my disability to employers in the first place?

    This question is often top of mind for folks. When the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into law in 1990, it became illegal for employers to discriminate against hiring qualified individuals due to mental or physical disability. 

    On top of that, the ADA also requires employers to make “reasonable accommodations” to ensure that qualified individuals with disabilitiesf can perform effectively at work (e.g., putting in a wheelchair ramp to access an office building). 

    Unfortunately, despite the progress since 1990, discrimination is still common and not all cases get solved. In 2021 alone, 22,843 disability claims were filed nationally, making it the most commonly reported type of discrimination in the workforce. 

    Refocusing on the positives, know that you are in control of what to share. You are not legally required to disclose your disability status to a potential employer. 

    It’s also worth noting that you might not be required to get into the specifics of your condition — which might give candidates who don’t want to be associated with the stigma of their disability peace of mind. While the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) hasn’t issued formal guidance on whether employers can ask for the precise diagnosis, some states, including California and Connecticut, do not allow companies to ask for detailed information about your medical history. 

    Despite the legal protections that exist (more on this in a bit), it’s perfectly understandable why someone with a disability might hesitate to disclose that information. All other factors the same, might an employer opt to hire a candidate without a disability over one with a disability? It’s a very valid concern.

    Before we take a look at some of the scenarios where it makes sense to disclose your condition, let’s take a step back and examine your legal rights as a jobseeker with a disability.

    Legal protection for jobseekers with disabilities

    If you’re qualifed for the essential functions of the job you’re applying for and you have a disability, the ADA protects you from getting passed over due to discrimination. “Qualification” includes having the requisite education, experience, and skill set needed to excel in the position — and the ability to perform the job responsibilities, with or without accommodation.

    This means that employers cannot discriminate against you during the recruiting, hiring, and training processes, and they also can’t discriminate against you when it comes to promotions, benefits, pay, and job assignments. During the interview process, employers are also not allowed to ask you questions about your medical history or health, whether you’ve filed workers’ comp claims, or whether you have disabilities. They can, however, ask questions about whether you are able to perform job responsibilities with reasonable accommodation. 

    While this protection creates an ideal scenario, discirimination can be difficult to prove in many cases. In the event you feel as though you’re being discriminated against, you need to file a claim with the EEOC within 180 days of said event taking place. Read more on how to file a complaint. 

    When is the best time to disclose a disability while job hunting?

    When it comes to disclosing your disability to a prospective employer, there’s no such thing as the perfect time. Some people have found being up front about it from the get-go has worked well, while others say early disclosure isn’t the best move for everyone. 

    When it boils down to it, timing your disclosure is up to you. Generally speaking, if you’re going to disclose your disability, you’ll have three options:

    Before the interview – this could be ideal for candidates who have visible disabilities so the interview can focus entirely on qualifications and experience During the interview – mentioning your disability during an interview can demonstrate your confidence to prospective employers and reassure them that your condition does not impact your performance and ability to meet the responsibilities of the roleAfter the interview – if you’ve got a job offer and haven’t disclosed your disability, now could be the best time, particularly if you’ll need accommodations

    Keep in mind that, while the ADA prevents employers from asking questions about disabilities during the interview process, they are allowed to ask after they’ve extended a job offer — as long as they ask the same questions to other candidates offered similar positions. If you decide to disclose information about a disability after an offer, know the employer cannot revoke it unless you cannot perform the primary job tasks or present a risk to yourself or others.

    Before you decide your strategy, spend some time researching the company to determine whether they have any public stance on hiring individuals with disabilities. In the age of diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives, many organizations are proactively searching for underrepresented individuals and putting effort and resources forward to foster a sense of belonging for all. In this light, revealing your disability could result in floodgates of support opening up. Not to mention, being your true, authentic self will really allow you to thrive in the workplace.

    If you’re still feeling unsure, we highly recommend clicking into the pages linked in this piece, as they go into extensive detail about various scenarios and may provide more specific information for your condition.

    Tips for discussing a disability during the job interview

    Catarina Rivera, disabled public speaker, offers guidance based on her experience with Usher syndrome. 

    Do not leave employers wondering whether you can perform the role. Explain to them how you will perform the tasks and functions essential to the position. Be confident and share your adaptations. This showcases your strengths and highlights exactly what you will bring to the table. 

    It is important, though, to avoid over explaining your diagnosis or disability. For example, if you have Usher syndrome. Instead of going into detail about what it is, you could say, “I wear hearing aids and have a limited field of vision due to a vision disability.” Don’t feel pressure to overshare or provide more information than necessary. You can keep it simple.  

    You have the right to request accommodations without stating your disability. For instance, as a person who is hard of hearing, you might say, “I benefit from closed captions. Can you please provide them during this virtual interview?” You can ask for what you need without elaborating or specifically having to say why. If the employer is truly inclusive, they will put in the effort. 

    If you’re feeling down on your luck, remember that you are not alone. There are numerous organizations that support people with disabilities in seeking meaningful work. Check out the resources below as you look for additional support and information.

    Diversability, an organization promoting disability pride

    Diversability is an award-winning ecosystem of over 70K (across all digital platforms) on a mission to elevate disability pride through disability community, visibility, and engaged allyship. Diversability works to break the cycle of social isolation and exclusion for disabled people, improving their overall wellbeing. Through the connections within the community and the work of the organization, Diversability aims to achieve representation and economic self-sufficiency for disabled people.

    Hired works with Diversability to provide community members a resource to find employment within the tech and sales space. This partnership aligns in the vision to create a world where all hiring is equitable, efficient, and transparent. Diversability encourages people with and without disabilities to check out their resources and community to connect with others, find support, or become an ally.

    Hired also partners with Diversability to educate the working world on disability representation and support in the workplace. If you’re an employer looking to make sure your organization creates a safe and accessible workplace for disabled employees, check out this article from Diversability: “Top 10 Disability Workplace Accommodations: How Does Your Company Measure Up?”

    Other resources for disclosing a disability during a job search

    Here’s to landing your dream job however you ultimately decide to navigate the process. Don’t forget to check out other listings on the Hired blog to assist with getting your job ready.

    Hired is the most efficient way to find a tech or a sales role you love today. With unbiased insights, DEI tools, skill assessments, and dedicated Candidate Experience Managers, Hired works with over 10,000 companies around the world to connect thousands of active and qualified candidates to employ their full potential. After registering, platform job seekers match with top employers thanks to better data, preference curation, and compensation transparency. Backed by The Adecco Group, Hired is rated by G2 as a leader in Recruiting Automation, Job Search Sites, and Diversity Recruiting. 

    Catarina Rivera, MSEd, MPH, CPACC, a disabled public speaker, DEI consultant, and content creator contributed to this article. More

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    What is DEI? How Does it Improve the Sales & Tech Job Search Process?

    A survey of tech and sales talent revealed there’s some confusion around the acronym DEI, prompting some respondents to ask, “what is DEI?” In this article we’ll explain it as well as explain how Hired, as a company and a tech and sales career marketplace, helps jobseekers and employers experience more equitable hiring. 

    What is DEI?

    Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), together, are indicators of a progressive and supportive workplace centered around employee wellbeing and sense of belonging. In a field as forward-thinking and transformative as tech, DEI provides the necessary foundation for greater innovation through a range of voices, experiences, and backgrounds. 


    The first pillar of DEI, diversity, signifies the presence of difference in characteristics including:

    EthnicityRaceGenderAge Sexual orientationDisabilitySocioeconomic statusReligion

    Diversity means everyone is welcome. In a less palpable sense, diversity also exists in the vein of thought. Different people bring different ideas and approaches spurring creativity and efficiency. In these areas, homogeneity can’t compete. 

    Therefore, to be competitive, it benefits organizations to consistently identify non-traditional talent. It creates more robust pipelines of candidates with new ideas to drive businesses forward.


    Equity helps level the playing field by ensuring impartiality and equal access to opportunity for every individual through recognition of biases and barriers. 

    In the context of gender, data from our 2022 Wage Inequality Report shows despite progress, women are still overall less likely to receive an interview request than men. This situation could be described as an “opportunity gap.”

    Equity means everyone has the opportunity to participate. A robust pipeline of diverse candidates will not have the chance to develop unless there are equitable processes in place to allow a variety of individuals to be considered.  

    It’s important to note that equity and equality are not interchangeable terms. While equality also aims to provide resources for everyone to succeed, it does not consider that people start on a different footing. Equity, on the other hand, accounts for these disparities by providing support, or opportunity, based on imbalances in power and privilege. 


    Inclusion, the last pillar of DEI, ensures the workplace is a safe space for every employee to engage and feel they belong. It means empowering employees to bring their most authentic selves forward and feel comfortable contributing their insights, knowing they will be heard. 

    Inclusion means everyone gets to contribute. It upholds diversity by embracing every identity and fostering a workplace for all individuals to thrive. 

    DEI gives everyone a seat at the table, creating opportunities for novel connections, pioneering conversations, and unprecedented insights.

    What does DEI mean to Hired as a company?

    As a leader in diversity recruiting and hiring tools, we have a direct impact on equitable hiring and are committed to building equity in the hiring process. We are on a mission to empower connections between ambitious people and teams, but can’t accomplish it without supporting a diverse workforce. Embracing diversity helps us live out our values and drives our mission forward.

    By putting people first, we prioritize development and wellbeing. Doing so helps people flourish and feel valued, knowing they can bring their best, authentic selves to work.

    At Hired, we find strength through inclusion because what makes each person unique makes us all strong. 

    How Hired embraces DEI as an employer

    As a company, we’re always evolving, but some of the ways Hired demonstrates DEI is following the principles when attracting and hiring talent. 

    For example, when we create job descriptions, we use tools like Textio to identify any language considered counter to our DEI efforts. 

    We support an employee resource group, or ERG, called Unite. They lead internal efforts in partnership with the People Team in the form of professional development, open discussions, and building awareness. 

    This year, one of Unite’s activities has been to host a book club featuring books by diverse authors. They also sponsor philanthropic activities. 

    Interested in working with us? See open roles here.

    5 Specific DEI features and tools on Hired’s platform to help jobseekers and employers 

    One of the reasons leading talent organizations use Hired is to drive diversity in their hiring. Here are some of the features we’ve developed based on data and insights to reduce bias. 

    When employers use them, it creates greater equity for jobseekers and a more DEI-friendly environment. Along with our policy of including salary upfront in interview requests, these help improve gaps in expectations, wages, and opportunities. 

    1. Diversity Goals

    We launched Diversity Goals last year as a new way for employers to prioritize outreach to underrepresented talent, without removing relevant matching candidates. Updated filters easily surface these jobseekers to recruiters and hiring managers. 

    Diversity Goals makes the impact of DEI in hiring clear. Companies with open positions using this feature more than doubled their pipeline of underrepresented candidates. Companies using Diversity Goals also had both a lower wage and expectation gap compared to companies who didn’t use the feature. 

    More good news is the amount of employers using Diversity Goals continues to grow rapidly, meaning companies and jobseekers will continue to see the benefits of DEI in action.

    2. Salary bias alert

    Our data continues to show groups who are paid less also expect lower salaries than their white, male counterparts – even if they have the same experience. In our 2022 Wage Inequality Report, we found race contributes to the expectation gap – with Hispanic women and Black women only expecting $0.91 to every $1 salary of their white male counterparts in 2021 Hired data.

    The Salary Bias Alert feature addresses wage inequality goals by notifying employers if they are offering a lower salary than they typically do for a given job role. This helps eliminate the impact of bias on a job offer and holds employers accountable.

    3. Bias reduction mode

    Bias, even when it’s not conscious, can impact sourcing decisions. Activating this mode removes jobseekers’ profile pictures and names so employers focus evaluations solely on skills and experience. 

    4. Salary Calculator

    Hired’s Salary Calculator determines salary benchmarks based on real interview requests, helping jobseekers know their worth. It is a great tool to compare salaries in some of the top cities worldwide, depending on your years of experience. See what you could be making with a company on Hired!

    Related: Evaluate the Job & Negotiate the Job Offer You Deserve

    5. Assessments

    Hired assessments enforce skills-based hiring by helping employers evaluate applicants’ skills remotely with customizable relevant, valuable, and consistent questions. These assessments help reduce hiring bias by leveling the playing field and standardizing evaluation processes.

    “Technical assessments are a valuable tool for candidates to showcase their skills to employers because it goes beyond explaining what you do on a resume…it shows the employers how skilled you really are!”Lupe Colangelo, Employer Partnerships Manager @ General Assembly

    Jobseeker resources: partners who support DEI

    Numerous Hired partners promote opportunities for underrepresented jobseekers across upskilling, cross training, and community. By supporting and partnering with organizations like these we can help connect employers with a more diverse pipeline of employees: 

    Related Blog: Coding Bootcamps Non-Traditional Education for Tech Talent

    Are you an employer looking to drive DEI in your organization? Hired is here to help. By leveraging our platform’s innovative DEI tools and transparent salary data, build diverse teams and close critical wage gaps—one hire at a time. 

    Want to learn more about how to advocate for DEI and be an ally? Watch the 2022 State of Wage Inequality in Tech: Close the Gap with Advocacy & Allyship Webinar below.

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    How Supporting Diversity Gives Your Business a Head Start

    Many organizations claim they support diversity, equality, and inclusion (DEI). Some, however, have yet to grasp that ensuring DEI is part of the hiring process is one of the keys to success.
    What is DEI?
    Effective diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) policies involve taking active steps to ensure that people with different ethnicities, genders, abilities, cultures, and personalities have representation, opportunity, and support in the face of historical and structural bias. DEI isn’t about box-ticking.
    It’s about delivering transparent and meaningful change that embraces all workers and makes them feel they’re an essential part of an organization.
    The Skills Gap
    Back in April, we released part 1 of our multipart “Future of Work” survey into the growing challenge of finding the right candidates.  Undertaken in conjunction with independent research firm Dynata, the survey revealed that UK hiring plans are up while skill shortages are greater. 87% of UK companies said they’re finding it hard to fill positions, with a third believing that the skills gap is widening. Companies across the UK told us that recruiters have to search harder and wider for talent, unlocking the untapped potential to fill the skills gap.
    It makes good business sense, therefore, to ensure all candidates, irrespective of race, gender, or other characteristics are fully considered in the recruitment process. Today, DEI isn’t an optional extra but a crucial part of being a modern business. In the second part of our “Future of Work” survey, we asked over 3,000 recruitment, talent acquisition, and HR professionals about their views on the importance of embracing difference in order to attract talent.
    Embracing Difference
    40% of organizations who took part in the survey said that candidates expect more than ever to learn about a company’s plans to become more diverse, while 70% expect companies to be open about the diversity of their workforce. Recruiters increasingly recognize that DEI is a factor in attracting the right talent – and that the talent wants to know about a company’s DEI efforts. 45% of employers believe that building a diverse workforce is a priority to retain existing talent and attract new employees.  And perhaps surprisingly, we found that nearly two-thirds of employees (62%) would reject a job offer from an organization with a culture that didn’t support diversity.
    The world of recruitment, like the rest of society, has faced a reckoning in recent years with diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) pushed to the fore. Our survey found that nearly a quarter of organizations already include diversity, equity, and inclusion in recruitment practices. In addition, 30% are seeking to encourage greater diversity in leadership positions.
    However, diversity isn’t what you say; it’s about what you do – so it’s encouraging to see that 40% of businesses are building DEI into recruitment processes and strategies. It isn’t just the right thing to do ethically – it benefits the company, the workforce, and the communities we operate in. It’s an ongoing task, and companies recognize they have more to do. it’s concerning, however,  that just 19% of employers have strategies to engage the neurodiverse. It’s an area that needs focus and action for employers, or they risk missing out on those with unique talents.
    Organizations are beginning to understand that differences are not necessarily negatives and are starting to value a diverse range of views and voices, from people with disabilities of whom only half are in work, including neurodiverse people (for example autism – only 22% of autistic adults in the UK are in any kind of employment), says the report.
    Good Communication is Vital
    Many organizations are now ensuring they communicate HR policies on inclusiveness so that applicants can understand the culture of a potential new workplace even before they consider applying for a role. According to the research, globally, 86% of employees consider diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) critically important. And employers are taking the hint, with 45% believing that building a diverse workforce is a priority to retain existing talent and attract new employees.
    The survey found that organizations that prioritize DEI use this as a mechanism to attract talent and fill the skills gap. However, only 8% of employers say DEI initiatives are in the top three changes they are making to attract new employees, although this may also reflect that they feel they already have robust processes in place.
    Recommendations based on the report
    Monster recommends that to create an open and welcoming workplace for neurodivergent workers organizations should:

    Take time to understand any specific needs. During your recruit’s induction week, take time to sit down and find out what their needs and difficulties are. Treat these as a benefit, not a burden.
    Apply to the “Access to Work” scheme. Employers can access grant funding to support disabled people starting or staying at work.
    Be flexible and ready to adapt. Employers who are flexible and prepared to adapt are more likely to experience the benefits of a neurodiverse workforce.

    Monster’s Top Tips for making DEI a priority in recruitment are:-

    Start by looking inward: listen to your staff and learn from their experiences. Use data to spot trends, but don’t stop there. Use the lived experience of colleagues to help you shape DEI policies and set priorities.
    Create more inclusive job descriptions: writing job adverts that focus on skills, attitude, and approach is critical to engaging talent. Don’t revert to cliché, but create job descriptions that engage and inspire applications from those with the skills to succeed.
    Highlight commitment to DEI: if you’re doing great things, let people know. Your stance on DEI is a source of competitive advantage, so use it. Publicize benefits, policies, and processes that show what you’re doing.
    Be transparent: employees want to know you’re making progress, so be transparent with successes and highlight challenges. Every organization can – and should – do more.
    Audit the hiring process: diversity isn’t what you say but what you do – so ensure inclusive hiring processes are embedded at every level. From the application to the interview, your staff should recognize and respect differences.
    Revitalize the talent pipeline: engage with new groups, advertise in new places, or work with experts to find candidates with the skills you need.
    Don’t stop at inclusive hiring: companies serious about DEI ensure there’s support at every step for new hires and existing staff. Leadership and development programs support underrepresented talent from early career entrants to the boardroom. Staff should be free to share their views, and employers must listen to their voices.

    Overall, we’re encouraged to see employers making changes to create a positive working environment that recognizes and rewards differences, because, in the end, we all benefit. Our survey shows that an open and accepting culture, and the policies to back it up, are critical to attracting the best talent.
    By Claire Barnes, Chief Human Capital Officer at Monster and Global HR Lead, Randstad Enterprise Group. 
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    How to Amplify Your DEI Initiatives in 2022

    Talent acquisition teams are no stranger to the importance of creating a diverse, equitable, and inclusive (DEI) workplace for all employees. According to the newly-released 2022 Job Seeker Nation Report, 38% of workers would turn down a job offer if the company lacked diversity in its workforce or had no clear goals for improving diversity in hiring. Below are ways companies can amplify DEI initiatives in 2022.
    Take Meaningful First Steps
    Many talent teams are dedicating considerable time and resources to DEI, including increasing investing budget resources to expand their efforts. In fact, 68% of recruiters reported that they believe improving DEI in their organization will be a top priority in the next year.
    Teams can take small steps by measuring key recruiting metrics in the process and continuing to analyze areas of improvement as changes are made. Here’s how:

    Understand the current workforce: This is a crucial step to help measure diversity of representation among an existing employee base. Evaluate the demographics across the organization, and within departments.
    Create a more diverse candidate pool: You’ve got to start somewhere, and there are several free tools and resources that can help you make sure you, and your company, are putting your best foot forward. Make small improvements to be more inclusive in recruiting practices by using free tools to help write more inclusive job descriptions and attract a wider variety of candidates.
    Develop inclusive content: Use existing social media channels and the company’s career website to tell employee stories within the organization. By leveraging this original content, your team can further convey how employees of differing backgrounds, ethnicities, races, genders, and abilities feel a sense of belonging. This is also a great medium to share current efforts and commitments for improving DEI. Think like a marketer – track the data related to interactions with your posts, understand what messages perform well, and determine what messages your audience wants to hear more about.

    Align Hiring Teams on Candidate Requirements
    Hiring team members can get stuck on the notion of the “ideal candidate.” This mindset can limit the diversity of talent pools by having too many requirements listed when they may not all be necessary. In today’s competitive labor market, this will cost your organization time, which inevitably will cost you top candidates.
    Grow a Diverse Talent Pipeline
    Today’s labor market is incredibly tight, and candidates expect a culture that embraces diversity, equity, and inclusion. Avoid limiting the talent pool by requiring specific skills and experience that are not dealbreakers. Build programs to attract, engage, and hire historically marginalized communities through strategic audience planning and develop programs to make everyone feel welcome.
    Talent teams must work hard to expand their talent networks and source diverse candidates, which can be done in the following ways:

    Interact on social media: Keep in touch with potential applicants, passive talent, and past candidates on social media. Share what’s going on in the company, tell employee stories, answer questions, post job openings, and give info on referral programs to the network.
    Attend recruiting events: Virtual and in-person recruiting events can be great places to help you build your talent network. Focus on hiring events that bring together a niche audience that is centered around diversity. These events are a great way to connect with job seekers and broadcast the message that the company is hiring.
    Work with local organizations: Find local diversity groups and work with them to source candidates for open positions. Building a relationship with these organizations can help long-term network growth.

    Leverage tools needed to enhance DEI initiatives
    Automation and AI tools can help further supplement DEI initiatives, streamline hiring  processes, and eliminate manual tasks in the following ways:

    Automated intelligent sourcing: Sourcing candidates can be the most time-consuming process in recruiting. Automated intelligent sourcing can help find candidates that fit open roles and invite them to apply. It can also reach top candidates while keeping the pool diverse.
    AI candidate skill-matching: Skill matching automatically screens applicants for role requirements, which is helpful for specialized roles that benefit from diverse candidates, such as engineers, healthcare workers, or machine operators. Integrating automated skill-matching tools with applicant tracking systems (ATS) eliminates the strain of managing multiple candidate databases in different places and helps find qualified talent more quickly. Leveraging technology to screen for skills can also help reduce bias in your hiring processes.

    Start Investing in DEI Today
    The time to prioritize DEI is now. In today’s challenging labor market, those who prioritize diversity, equity, and inclusion will find more qualified candidates, which can turn into new hires. Talent teams can improve the diversity of their candidate slates by taking charge and applying the right strategies throughout the hiring process, including sourcing, relationship management, workforce planning, and audience planning.
    The investment in DEI goes far beyond cash – employers can invest time in telling the organization’s story, setting expectations, and aligning teams, which often yields the highest return on investment. It’s critical to lead DEI initiatives with empathy, compassion, and dedication, and to be relentless in driving change.
    By: Corey Berkey, Senior Vice President, People & Talent, Employ Inc. 
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    Hired Tech Candidate Spotlight – Paula Muldoon, Senior Software Engineer for Zopa in the UK

    We understand you started in a different field or pivoted from a different type of degree and education, tell us about it… I had an international classical music career, having toured over 20 countries, recorded at Abbey Road, performed at the Royal Albert Hall. I spent way more than the vaunted 10,000 hours practising the […] More

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    A Step-By-Step Checklist To Inclusive Hiring in 2022

    Many HR departments are attempting to create a diverse workplace in today’s world, but you can’t have diversity without inclusion.
    To construct a diverse team and a modern and attractive workplace culture, HR staff must create an environment that welcomes all individuals and fosters equal engagement and representation.
    In recent years, there has been a significant effort in the UK to fight for equality, to the point that employers are instituting quotas based on gender, BAME, disability, and even sexual orientation.
    There are two significant types of diversity in today’s workplace:
    First, inherent diversity is concerned with qualities such as race, gender, and age. Education, experience, beliefs, skills, and knowledge are all aspects of acquired variety.
    Natural HR has set out to explore our top ideas for making a diverse and inclusive recruitment process a standard element of your people talent strategy in this article.
    What is the definition of workplace diversity?
    It is critical to remember that workplace diversity is defined as when a company understands, accepts, and values differences between people of different races, ethnicities, genders, ages, religions, disabilities, and sexual orientations, as well as differences in personalities, skill sets, experiences, and knowledge.
    What are the benefits of diversity and inclusivity recruitment?
    Having a functional diversity and inclusion strategy that is incorporated into your recruitment workflow will provide your company with various benefits, including:

    Hiring better talent.
    Being able to make more informed business decisions.
    Increasing the performance of your teams.
    Accelerating innovation by allowing different mindsets to collaborate.
    Gaining more decadent customer satisfaction due to high-quality staff.
    Improving company culture with improved employee satisfaction.

    The inclusive hiring in the workplace checklist
    The tutorial below will walk you through the whole recruitment process, from bringing on a new team member to crafting a job advertisement and interviewing qualified candidates. It will include critical considerations to ensure that diversity and inclusion are prioritized at each stage.
    1. Audit your job adverts to remove bias:
    When it comes to inclusive and diverse recruitment, you can’t look forward without looking back. As a result, the first step you must take is to assess your whole recruitment pipeline to identify faults and begin implementing improvements that will address diversity and inclusivity concerns.
    When reviewing historical job advertisements, you may find a propensity to employ more masculine or feminine language in job advertisements, which may discourage particular groups from applying for specific roles. Based on the findings of this analysis, you may then retroactively apply new conditions to the recruiting procedure to reduce biases in future recruitment drives.
    2. Target sources where diverse candidates are focused:
    It is now easier than ever to recruit applicants from a large skill pool with the Internet’s strength. To that end, sourcing individuals from several sources is a terrific method to diversify your recruitment pool.
    Rather than relying solely on traditional job boards or recruitment agencies, look for chances to diversify candidates through alternative sources such as educational institutions, government agencies, and even rehabilitation centers.
    You might also communicate directly with organizations that focus on specific areas; for example, for a technology post, you could interact directly with women in technology groups to connect with suitable female applicants.
    3. Encourage your employees to utilize their network:
    If you want to hire more of a specific group of under-represented people, reach out to some of your current team members who fall into that category.
    Creating an internal applicant recommendation program is one approach to accomplish this. You will be able to connect with similar candidates from varied backgrounds by utilizing your existing internal pool of diverse workers.
    4. Offer internships targeted at underrepresented groups:
    Offering internships to folks with specialized credentials is a terrific approach to foster up-and-coming talent in your sector. To accomplish this, you may form collaborations with education and community organizations in your area to provide an opportunity to groups that may struggle to take the first steps into the roles you’re recruiting for.
    5. Develop an employer brand that showcases your diversity:
    When developing a brand identity, don’t overlook the significance of diversity and inclusivity. You should encourage employees from various backgrounds to share their experiences with your organization, which you should then incorporate into your employer and recruiting branding.
    Having these stories in place and actively pushing them in your applicant sourcing is a terrific approach to ensure your diversity recruiting strategy is working properly.
    6. Utilize blind recruitment:
    Blind recruitment is one of the most popular trends in the industry. To reduce bias during the first recruitment stage, it takes steps to blackout essential information such as name, age, education, and candidate photos. The idea here is to avoid further discrimination in who you choose to interview.
    7. Rethink what factors you screen for when hiring:
    When determining what your ideal recruit looks like, it is vital to ensure that your possible candidates exhibit the characteristics that your firm values. Throughout the recruitment process, examine how you’re screening candidates and yourself to see whether you’re directing the outcomes towards specific types of people owing to potential bias.
    Chris Bourne is Head of Marketing at Natural HR. Natural HR is a cloud-based HR software for small businesses and organizations looking to improve staff management and pay. 
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    How to Embed Diversity and Inclusion into Your Recruitment Policy

    The ‘S’ (social) in ESG campaigns is integral to any business, a lack of diversity can negatively impact growth and stifle creativity. Diverse teams generate almost 20% more revenue than those that are lacking in this area.
    Thinking carefully about the specific language used in job adverts, using blind CV assessments, and employing inclusive interviewing techniques can all help businesses embed diversity and inclusion into their recruitment policies.
    With almost one-third of jobseekers and employees have said they would not apply to a company where there is a lack of diversity among its workforce, it’s time that businesses start to scrutinize their recruitment policies.
    Think about the job advert
    Pay attention to the nuances in recruitment communication to ensure what is written is inclusive and unbiased.
    Job adverts should avoid phrases such as “competitive nature” and “aggressively determined” in favor of truthful descriptions of competency, these phrases are also typically ‘male-coded’, so might deter female applicants from applying. Similarly, complex jargon and specialist terms can also overwhelm applicants. Adverts should be as simple and to the point as possible.
    The use of equality and diversity statements in job adverts can aid in creating an inclusive atmosphere from the very start of the recruitment process. One study found that job adverts with an empathetic diversity statement left 71% of potential applicants with a positive impression of the hypothetical employer.
    Similarly, awards such as ‘The Times Top 50 Employers of Women’ can be mentioned on job applicants to reassure minority applicants that they are welcome to apply.
    Blind CV assessment
    The Department for Work and Pensions sent out applications to 1,000 job vacancies with 2/3 containing names typically associated with a certain ethnic group. Results showed that ethnic minority applicants needed to send out 74% more applications in order to generate the same success rate as those with White sounding names.
    Removing names, ages, genders, and postcodes from CVs before they are assessed can remove opportunities for bias to enter the recruitment process. A number of top employers adopt this technique, including the UK’s Civil Service.
    Championing diversity and inclusion is not just about CV blind initiatives. It’s a complex and multifaceted agenda.
    Keeping an eye out for opportunities to learn more about diverse talent pools should be a priority. At Totum Partners, we host a series of successful diversity and inclusion webinars, such as: ‘How to create the most diverse firm in Britain’.
    Inclusive interviewing
    Once a candidate is at an interview, the best way to minimize bias is to combine a number of efforts, there is no magic bullet approach.
    Standardizing the interview questions in a structured manner will allow the employer to focus on the candidate’s skills that will determine their ability to perform the job. Unstructured interviews are difficult to compare, making it more likely that personal factors will infiltrate the hiring decision.
    Sometimes called a “mental shortcut”, affinity bias is common. This means we gravitate towards people who we feel are similar to ourselves. Training modules and workshops are a good way to generate self-awareness of your own biases.
    The importance of succession planning
    Employees should be able to see diversity all the way up an organization. Last month it was reported that 2 in 5 Black employees have left their job because of a lack of diversity.
    Initiatives that only focus on entry-level recruitment leave BME employees without anyone to look up to. Since 2018, among the Fortune 500 boards, of the 974 seats filled by new directors, 80% were by White directors, this is an example of bad succession planning.
    Organizations should consider lateral workplace diversity when looking at how to progress talent internally. Firms that ignore this form of conscious inclusion, will soon be left behind, especially considering the escalating numbers of employees quitting their jobs in the UK in recent months.
    Having awareness of the benefits that diversity brings to the workplace is important, but actions speak louder than words.
    As a recruitment firm, Totum is committed to questioning candidate lists that show a lack of diversity. Feedback on a BME candidate that reads “something was not quite right” needs to be followed up for factual feedback. Too often this behavior goes unquestioned.
    This is embedded into the Race Fairness Commitment that Totum is a part of. The Commitment pledges all members to engage in activities to ensure equal access to opportunities for all candidates.
    Calls for diversity and inclusion will grow louder in 2022. Deloitte’s 2018 Millennial Survey demonstrated that diversity is integral to workplace loyalty, with candidates saying they are more likely to stay with an employer for over 5 years if there is diversity in the workplace.
    Employers must be aware of how to entrench diversity and inclusion into their recruitment policies, or both their business and colleagues will suffer. CV blind assessments, inclusive interviewing, and succession planning should be a staple in any recruitment process in 2022 if businesses want to take this agenda seriously.
    By Deborah Gray, Director at Totum Partners.
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