Companies all over the world are aiming to become more inclusive in 2023. Hiring a diverse workforce is good for workers, it’s good for businesses, and it’s good for everyone. That’s the point. Everyone should have the same opportunities to succeed, no matter their background. Inclusive hiring starts with the application process, follows the interview process, and lasts all the way through candidate selection.
Actively recruiting more diverse groups of people from all walks of life is a crucial first step to building a more inclusive workplace, which is why inclusive hiring is picking up steam in 2023.
Freelancers and creatives (like us) offer pitches, apply for opportunities, and develop proposals. We are often subjected to the same subconscious bias as other types of workers during the hiring process. Do inclusive hiring practices apply to creative lines of work, too?
This article will explain what inclusive hiring is and why it’s so important this upcoming year. We’ll also tell you how inclusive hiring affects freelancers and what you can do about it.
What is Inclusive Hiring?
We are only human. We all make mistakes, and sometimes employers make hiring decisions based on subconscious bias. Fortunately, business is shifting toward diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Inclusive hiring is a business practice that aims to minimize bias during the hiring process. It’s a proactive approach to solving the diversity dilemma in the workplace.
It’s also about creating a comfortable workplace environment for everyone. It’s about lessening work stress and making it easier to be successful, no matter your race, gender, age, credit status, or ability. It’s not just finding “diversity hires.” It’s a process that changes the way we think about job candidates, how we work, and what people are willing to put up with at their job.
There are many ways that businesses can make moves toward inclusive hirings, such as:
- Writing inclusive job descriptions.
- Encouraging diverse candidates to apply.
- Standardizing hiring and interviewing steps.
- Creating role-based hiring criteria.
- Removing personal information from skills assessments.
- Purposefully seeking diverse additions to their team.
- Adding a line where applicants can indicate how to pronounce their name and their preferred pronouns.
- Committing to creating a culture of diversity, equity, and inclusion.
- Making it easier for workers to move between roles.
- Offering flexibility for people who are caretakers.
- Allowing workers to work from home.
- Offering DEI training and support for all workers.
- Encouraging employees to take advantage of benefits.
Why Inclusive Hiring will Become More Important
The job market has been a mess for many years, especially for freelance workers. Companies have been slow to come around to the fact that employees aren’t just worker bees.
Creating a positive work/life balance is what makes the world go round. 2023 will be the perfect storm that paves the way for inclusive hiring practices worldwide. Here’s why:
Job satisfaction is at an all-time low
When we are overworked and underpaid, our productivity decreases, job satisfaction disappears, and we get burnt out. Marginalized freelancers and other unhireables experience these problems more often and intensely than others.
But rising generations of workers aren’t putting up with things like discrimination and racism anymore. Rather than sit back and watch, millennials and Gen Z-ers are taking action when someone is treated unfairly.
The Great Resignation occurred due to many things. A lack of work/life balance, bad pay, and lack of opportunity all caused people to leave their jobs. In the wake of tragedies that affected minorities, there was a strong focus on making the world a better place for everyone.
Businesses want to hire top talent
Inclusive hiring benefits businesses, too.
Recent surveys show that 76% of workers say that looking for a diverse workforce is part of their job-seeking process. Also, 37% of workers say they wouldn’t even apply to work with a business with bad ratings from people of color.
Businesses are feeling the pressure. They need workers, but the workers don’t want to work for a company that isn’t inclusive. Their only option is to switch to inclusive hiring practices if they want to stay afloat. This is critical for important positions such as IT security, which is necessary to ensure that customer and business data are kept secure.
Plus, they could be missing out on a great candidate simply because they are put off by their differences. That’s hardly a reason to pass on a valuable asset.
Inclusive Hiring Practices
Here’s how employers are working toward more inclusive hiring practices in 2023:
Defining inclusion in the workplace
Inclusivity and diversity are often limited to race and gender, but there are many types of people with various backgrounds and life experiences.
Companies are taking a good hard look at what inclusion means for them. Plus, they are creating a more open and honest work environment, hopefully leading to less discrimination falling through the cracks.
Writing more inclusive job postings
Companies are widening their reach by using inclusive language from the very beginning. Gender-neutral language, shorter sentences, and fewer requirements help remove career barriers for marginalized people.
Instead, job postings will focus on the roles and responsibilities a worker will fill. That leaves the gate wide open for anyone who believes they have what it takes to apply.
Making the application process more accessible
Company websites are taking accessibility seriously these days. Businesses are using language that is easy to read and dyslexia-friendly fonts. They are also using different types of content to get their message across.
Transcripts, videos, close captions, and image alt text are all ways companies are making the application process more accessible.
Creating more diverse recruiter teams
What better way to attract diverse talent than hiring recruiters who know diversity?
An interview panel of people of different ages, genders, ethnicities, and abilities can help reduce bias. Group interviews with a panel of interviewers also help a company see a candidate from several perspectives. It helps teams find the best workers, regardless of their background.
Improving recruitment tools
There are all kinds of software out there now that is built to reduce bias during the hiring process. Tools and technology are helping find more diverse talent by helping businesses make objective decisions.
Many recruiting technologies have built-in features to help remove biased language and define key decision criteria in advance.
Providing equal career opportunities
Inclusion is also about providing equal career opportunities for everyone. Businesses hire talent from within before looking outside the firm.
They strive to locate better places or departments for those who aren’t a good fit before terminating them. Mentorship and sponsorship programs are already popular, but there will most likely be more of them in the future.
Putting inclusion front and center
Finally, employers are putting inclusion front and center to attract diverse talent to their brands. Millennial and Gen Z workers make up the largest portion of the workforce, so companies are adjusting their values to meet the needs of the new generations.
Businesses are making inclusion a part of their brand, showcasing their commitment to creating a positive work environment for all.
What Inclusive Hiring Means for Freelancers
Inclusive hiring ensures equal opportunity. Freelancers may not face workplace discrimination like on-site employees, but several hurdles prohibit diverse freelancers from finding clients.
Pitch inclusive freelancer hiring. Clients may not have considered bias before. They may have ignored your pitch in favor of someone more familiar.
Since inclusive hiring and diversity are such prominent subjects in the workplace, organizations are working to understand their discriminatory behavior and promote diverse freelancers. In 2023, a more “woke” work market will benefit creatives that face skin color, diagnosis, or background discrimination.
Here’s how freelancers can stand out during the hiring process:
- Self-express. Highlight your uniqueness when pitching to clients. Don’t disguise your identity in 2023—employers seek diverse candidates.
- Be more inclusive. Traditional freelancers should get DEI training and pitch minority-owned enterprises. Open your mind and work with folks you may not have considered before to become more inclusive.
- Be bold. Freelancers should embrace their individuality in 2023 and push their ideas to new heights. Pitch your latest crazy idea, apply for that job you didn’t think you could get, and work with inclusive clients.
Inclusive hiring is an endeavor to make work a better place for everyone. Let’s be honest: work is work. Work is more difficult when you are marginalized or neglected because of who you are.
It’s about building teams of diverse talents and perspectives to make work more productive and a less harmful place to be.
Instead of perpetuating social problems, inclusive hiring works against them to level the playing field and give everyone an equal chance at career success.
Ready to get hired? At Twine, we have dozens of top-quality jobs being posted each and every day. There is a job waiting for your skills in everything from design to marketing, development, and copywriting. Join the marketplace of diverse creative talent here.