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In 2023, if there's one thing employers have learned from the pandemic, it is the necessity to attract and retain the right talent. Tech companies, in particular, are no strangers to the struggle, where finding qualified team members to fill the skills gap has historically been a challenge. As if it weren’t enough to think about, developing an environment that celebrates diverse teams, promotes creativity, and fosters productivity is crucial to the survival of modern businesses.

According to the CNBC/SurveyMonkey Workforce Happiness Index, 78% of employees say it’s important for them to work at an organization that prioritizes diversity and inclusion, and 58% go as far as to say that it is “very important” to them. Research science manager at SurveyMonkey, Laura Wronski, reports, “workers who are satisfied with their company’s efforts on [DEIB] issues are happier with their jobs.”

Building strong, diverse teams is your ticket to keeping employees happy and engaged during this prevalent talent war.

Why Diversity Is A Good Business Decision

How Do Diverse Teams Drive Innovation And Creativity?

Software engineering has largely been white-male dominated for years; this is no longer the case. According to Matt Decuir, founder of Invisible Network, more companies are prioritizing diversity as they hire developers. Bootcamps and online schools like Microverse have contributed significantly toward the rise of historically underrepresented or marginalized communities in the field. 

Source: Unsplash

Hiring junior web development talent from a range of different backgrounds isn't just the right thing to do in the name of inclusivity; it makes for a good business decision as well.  Building a team comprised of those with different life perspectives will inevitably bring new ideas and ways of thinking to your organization. Many of these entry-level engineers have prior professional experience and bring added value, an excellent example of how diversity can elevate your team.

In a large-scale study across 171 companies in Germany, Switzerland, and Austria, the Boston Consulting Group found a direct correlation between how diverse and innovative they were. The Harvard Business Review conducted a complementary study and reached a similar conclusion.

The more diverse teams are across the age, culture, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, experience level, and educational background spectrum, the more likely they are to draw inspiration from seemingly unrelated places and problem-solve effectively. The next time you have a complex project, try bringing together a group of diverse talent to craft a solution. You may be surprised at the angles they take. Further, 80% of full-time employees say that inclusion is essential when considering companies and job offers

The ability to innovate is a competitive edge, and focusing on diversity and inclusion in the workplace is a proven way to foster innovative potential. Take a look at some of the well-known and innovative companies that are leveraging diverse talent to scale their business.

Are Diversity And Productivity Correlated?

If enhanced creativity is a byproduct of a diverse team, then surely productivity is too. In research, Deloitte Australia uncovered that teams that were diverse and inclusive outperformed their peers by 80% in team-based assessments. In addition, teams with high diversity (by gender, geography, and age) showed a 60% improvement in decision-making, according to Cloverpop, an online decision-making platform.

It’s undeniable that prioritizing diversity and inclusion can lead to a more positive company culture. By creating an environment that values and respects different perspectives, you are creating a safe place for employees to share, learn, and develop.

The more engaged and included employees are, the more productive they will be. This is just one of the reasons why 90% of companies in the US rank diversity, inclusion, and equity highly among their strategic priorities for building high-performing teams.

When diverse team members collaborate, it’s only natural to reflect on the different circumstances surrounding each colleague. This encourages teams to “compromise” throughout production and deliver what could be their best work yet. Co-founder and CEO of Gebeya Media, Bereket Taffese testifies to this:

"While our studio HQ is based in Ethiopia, our team and clients are located around the world. Every day we work to incorporate the thoughts and concerns of so many backgrounds — race, age, and cultural values. By bringing about such different viewpoints all under one roof for a project, we find an increase in innovative and creative ideas. We incorporate these insights into our video projects and feel like the final product benefits from us doing so. You need all hands on deck to reflect and see how they can best contribute."

Frans Johansson of The Medici Group adds that diverse teams have far more pathways to execute an idea, empowering them to deliver results faster and cost-effectively.

What Effect Does Diversity Have On Turnover?

In Glassdoor's 2020 Diversity Hiring Survey, 76% of job seekers and employees indicated that a diverse workforce is important when evaluating employers and job offers. It's particularly important to underrepresented groups, where 41% of black and 41% of LGBTQ job seekers and employees rated the importance of diversity higher among the 30% of white and 32% of non-LGBTQ job seekers and employees.

Hiring from a more diverse talent pool of junior developers makes your business attractive to ambitious candidates ready to make an impact and more likely to stay on board at a company where they feel valued for their unique contributions. Diversity and inclusion drive employee engagement, raising retention by 19% and collaboration by 57%. By creating an inclusive atmosphere of cross-cultural cooperation, you also reduce employee turnover and dissatisfaction costs.

Creating A Diverse And Inclusive Workplace

Why Should You Hire A Diverse Team?

Hiring remotely allows for greater diversity, changing the game for companies that are located in smaller, homogenous locations. The best and the most skilled from around the world aren’t reserved for larger businesses and are not limited to areas where the cost of living is high. Of the 67% of global engineers surveyed to want to work for a US tech company, nearly 40% would not relocate for the role. 

Source: Unsplash

Remote work can remove entry barriers, level the playing field for marginalized groups, and give you more flexibility around costs associated with building and retaining a high-powered team. Opening a subsidiary, using an Employer of Record (EOR), and invoicing and keeping records are among several things to consider when hiring a remote team. Check out our FAQ for building and managing successful remote teams.

If there were ever a time to hire beyond borders to cultivate a sustainable workforce, it would be now.

Do You Have Enough Gen Z and Millennial Representation In The Workplace?

These trail-blazing generations are free from preconceptions about the traditional ways of working and are inspired by teamwork over individual contributions. They want to connect on a human level and prioritize respect, equity, and inclusion. Born in an era of technology, this group is tenacious, resourceful, and determined to find a better way of getting things done.

This is good for business, and what’s better, millennials and Gen Z seek jobs where they can maximize their skills, talents, and experience. A dedicated workforce, motivated by more than targets, is not sold on “excellent benefits and compensation.” Employers are forced to be creative in attracting, hiring, developing, and retaining talent.

Are Your Job Descriptions, Benefits, And Perks Attracting Diverse Candidates? 

Consider who you would like on your team and tap into their motivations and values without being misleading about who your company is. Actively recruiting for diversity does not just mean publishing diverse photos on your careers page because, let’s face it, it’s no longer a differentiating factor.

Over 50% of employees think their employers could do more to boost diversity in the workforce, and this number increases among (71%) of Black and (72%) of Hispanic employees. Approximately  76% of job seekers say a diverse workforce is important to them when considering companies and job offers, and 72% would consider leaving an organization to join one with greater inclusivity. It’s safe to say that how you present your company is essential. To capture diverse talent, keep these items in mind: 

  • Be creative about the job posting boards you use. Remote Ok and We Work Remotely connect employers to a global workforce with various experience levels.
  • Ensure the wording of your job descriptions does not directly or indirectly exclude based on such characteristics as age, ethnicity, nationality, and sexual orientation.
  • Focus on what’s necessary instead of listing too many required skills; candidates are often hired without ticking every box on an exhaustive list.
  • Show off your benefits and perks. Paid time off, recognition of holidays, home office stipends, and international team meet-ups are desirable to a diverse talent pool.
  • Utilize organizations and networks, such as GitHub, Stack Overflow, and Hashnode, to grow a pipeline of diverse talent globally. Participate in international or diversity-focused job fairs, conferences, seminars, and other networking events to source global talent.
  • End your job descriptions with a diversity and inclusion statement.
Source: Pexels

Key Takeaways

  • Diversity encourages innovation and productivity among teams.
  • Hiring junior developers increases diversity in the workplace; chances are they are bringing a wealth of experience from other disciplines.
  • Attract the right talent and create inclusive environments through compelling job descriptions, benefits, perks, and networking opportunities; developing bright teams regardless of background allows companies to thrive and innovate.

 Visit Microverse to learn more about hiring the best software developers for your team without geographical constraints.

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