EMPLOYER TAX BRIEF
Should your organization launch a diversity program?
For employers, the word “diversity” no longer refers only to race and gender. It’s about providing a working environment in which all employees — regardless of background, identity and beliefs — are recognized and reassured that their contributions are valued. An organization that succeeds at managing diversity should see robust productivity and high morale, and it may be able to attract more of today’s top job candidates.
For these reasons, many employers are establishing diversity programs. Should your organization follow suit? Perhaps, but it’s important to fully grasp the purpose of a move like this before you begin investing dollars, people and time.
In a nutshell, diversity programs are formal efforts to help employees better understand, accept and appreciate differences among everyone on staff. Differences typically include race, ethnicity, gender, age, religion, disabilities and sexual orientation. They may also include education, personality types, skill sets and life experiences.
A program might include training courses, seminars, guest speakers, group discussions and social events. Strategic objectives often include:
Improving collaboration and productivity within teams and amongst various teams or departments,
Attracting job candidates from as many different societal groups as possible, and
Connecting with growing multicultural markets who don’t necessarily respond to traditional messaging.
Think of implementing a diversity program as an investment, not an expense. It should include specific goals and achievable returns.
Starting the process
A diversity program could help employees get along better and attract the job candidates you need to stay competitive. But that doesn’t mean establishing one is a no-brainer that you should rush into at any cost. Our firm can help you assess the feasibility of the idea.