Mar 07, 2023

Want to be more competitive? Be diverse! Generate a 15% increase in output with a diverse workforce

You will definitely want to hire a diverse workforce after hearing all the benefits of diversity hiring! There’s a bigger talent pool, coverage under CSR, increased employee engagement, minimal attrition, improved productivity and an increase in revenue. Not only that, there is a bigger impact created in the society as people who had been marginalised by the society can now contribute as equal members of the society. However, businesses need to be mindful of the challenges that come along with diversity hiring.

Diversity hiring is increasingly gaining traction in the corporate world. While some laud the idea behind it, many others just see it as a trend while disregarding the necessity for the same. So, it becomes important to understand the whole discourse behind the idea of bringing diversity in the workplace.

According to the 2011 census, there were 2.68 crore people with disabilities in India. Only 25% of this population was reported as being officially employed. In the private sector, PwDs accounted for 0.28% of the total workforce. In multinational companies, only 0.05% of the workforce comprised of PwDs. To counter this disproportionate figure, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DE&I) strategies are essential.

Diversity in the workplace means that an organization employs a diverse team of people, that’s reflective of the society in which it exists and operates. Equity means ensuring that processes and programs provided to all employees are impartial, fair and provide equal possible outcomes for every individual, irrespective of the identities they represent. Inclusion means involving this same set of employees of diverse backgrounds in relevant exercises, decision making and performance exercises. And what is imperative is to make sure these don’t just remain on paper. Rather, companies should actively make these a part of their business strategy. We try to do the same at Quess.

88,000 professionals at Quess are females, with many of them earning more than their male counterparts in sectors like retail, FMCG, EMPI, manufacturing & real estate. We have also employed more than 8000 differently-abled professionals out of which 16% are females. Thus, it is no surprise that we were recognized as “Diversity Champion” (Search & Staffing) when we won the LinkedIn Talent Awards 2021. But, why should a business hire differently-abled people?

Well, there are several benefits that are associated with embracing diversity in the workplace.

  • Coverage Under CSR- Incorporating the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Strategy to hire employees from different backgrounds also opens up several benefits for companies under the Corporate Social Responsibility.
  • Bigger Talent Pool- By hiring people from varied backgrounds, one gets to tap into the potential of a section of society that has been left out of the mainstream. This means having a wider variety of options to choose from.
  • Increased Employee Engagement & Trust- Diversity in the workplace may increase employee engagement as well because employees are more likely to be engaged when they feel included.
  • Increased Revenue- Inclusive companies also generate greater profitability. One study shows that companies in the top quartile for gender diversity on their executive teams are 15% more likely to generate above-average profitability compared to companies in the bottom quartile whose executive teams are predominantly white males.
  • Negligible Attrition- Studies have shown that employees who are marginalized by society are more loyal to a company and are less likely to resign.
  • Improved Productivity Benchmarks- Diversity in the workplace leads to faster decision making. In fact, a study published by Harvard Business Review found a positive correlation between diversity and performance.

This is how a typical Diversity hiring process looks like when we hire an associate for a client: We identify and understand the business requirements & opportunities for employment. We then source candidates by mobilizing & screening & shortlisting candidates as per the clients’ requirement. We also support onboarding to oversee a seamless transition from candidate to becoming an employee. Then, a system of working together is created by providing a Sign language Interpreter support to HR and allocate an implant. After corporate sensitization and Indian Sign Language training, we remain connected with the corporate and employee for better workplace integration. There are periodic reviews and feedback sessions with employer and employee.Read more...

Similarly, a lot of businesses are increasingly moving towards employing a diverse workforce that is representative of the diverse society we live in. However, despite having a system in place, professional life for differently-abled people is fraught with challenges. Understanding those can help us be mindful of the nitty-gritties that come along while creating a fair and inclusive work arrangement.

  • People with disabilities may not be given the same training opportunities as other employees, which can limit their ability to perform their job duties.
  • People with disabilities often need alternative or flexible working arrangements, such as part-time or remote work, to accommodate their needs. However, not all employers are willing to provide these arrangements.
  • People with disabilities often encounter physical barriers in the workplace that can make it difficult for them to access the same resources as other employees. This can include lack of wheelchair ramps, accessible bathrooms, or other accommodations that make it difficult for people with disabilities to participate in the workplace.
  • Assistive technology can help people with disabilities perform their job duties, but often these tools are too expensive or not available due to budget constraints
  • Despite laws and regulations aimed at protecting the rights of people with disabilities, many employers still hold negative attitudes towards people with disabilities. This can lead to an uncomfortable work environment and can limit opportunities for advancement.

Our CEO, Mr Nitin Dave is a great advocate for hiring a diverse workforce. Here’s what he has to say about it:

"PwD candidates can bring a new perspective to the workplace, help increase diversity, provide a wide range of skills, and increase morale among current employees. PwD candidates also typically have a strong work ethic and dedication to their job, which can help to improve productivity and efficiency."

To know more about how to get a diverse workforce, write in to Nitasha at nitasha.agarwal@quesscorp.com our head of DE&I.
"A diverse workforce fosters a sense of belonging, leading to increased dedication and loyalty, resulting in low attrition rates and increased productivity."

Diversity - Nitasha Agarwal - Head, Diversity Hiring