Diversity isn't a nice-to-have in 2023, it's a strategic necessity

'The most impactful DEI leaders pull rich perspectives from every corner'

Diversity isn't a nice-to-have in 2023, it's a strategic necessity

The pandemic changed employee expectations around diversity, inclusion and equity (DEI), with eight in 10 employees actively seeking an employer with a well-known commitment to diversity, according to Glassdoor data.

And looking at HRD’s recent -Star Diversity and Inclusion Employers report, leading Canadian organizations are beginning to take DEI much more seriously, especially in today’s increasingly tight talent market.

Our research found that over the past 12 months, leadership teams are committing to more sustainable practices, giving HR leaders more control when it comes to rolling our authentic DEI policies.

‘Collective, meaningful effort’

But don’t fall prey to imagining that paying “lip service” to DEI is enough to get the right candidates through the door – in fact, if you’re not transparent in your diversity tactics, then you could end up doing more harm than good.

“A truly diverse workplace is made up of a collective, meaningful effort by both the organization and employees, including diversity of thought and ideas,” says Sada Carman, HR generalist at BlueCat.

“You only get that when you are being intentional about having a diverse group of people at the organization. This, of course, impacts so many pieces of the employee lifecycle, from recruitment, to onboarding, to development and retention. 

“We must ensure that we are looking at all areas of the employee lifecycle and measurable, focused DEI goals around the lifecycle. These efforts promote empathy, compassion, and the principles of equity to support an environment that embraces diversity for our team and community.”

Future trends

As part of our research, HRD looked at future trends around DEI – specifically what HR leaders will be investing into in 2023. According to our data, culture and values will likely be amended to better reflect inclusivity in Canadian workplaces. This could take the form of leadership development and senior coaching, to ensure that any DEI pushes are always coming from the top down.

And, perhaps most importantly, don’t forget to include your people in your planning.

“In addition to leadership commitment and accountability, DEI success ultimately depends on innovative thinking, bold ideas, a commitment to embrace each and every employee voice as well as bringing everyone along the journey,” says Rolddy Leyva, chief diversity officer at technology giant Splunk.

“The most impactful DEI leaders pull rich perspectives from every corner and it’s critical you have the ability to assess, listen and amplify voices within an organization. DEI cannot be exclusive to any one team or person – everyone has a role to play, an experience to share and an ear to give.” 

Read HRD’s full report on DEI trends here.

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