Four ways to ensure equity at the workplace
Tuesday December 28, 2021, By Janani Sampath
As leaders, you are responsible for making plans, pursuing goals, and executing them. However, with a diverse workplace today, you also have to ensure that it offers a level-playing field or is equitable to enable all in the workforce to meet their fullest potential.
Equity is something that differs with people because it considers individual needs. Take two different strands of diversity at the workplace —a woman who has returned to work after a maternity break and a person with a disability. Equity assumes a different meaning for both. For the woman, it would be about flexible working hours. And, for the person with disabilities, it could mean a safe and secure work area to access and move around—something that doesn’t deter the person from being productive.
Here are four ways to ensure that:
Make job descriptions accessible: Equity has to begin at the hiring process when you decide to open the avenues of opportunities for a diverse group. Ensure there is transparency around the compensation offered and the details about the same job— with its complete description is available to the talent pool, which is diverse, in multiple avenues. It also means that you can keep a combination of employee referrals and external sources to take the opportunity of applying for them to a larger group.
Look for collaboration: While the mantra has been to find a culture fit, you might want all employees to be culture collaborators. You must look at the value a person can add, going beyond individual skill sets. As a collaborator, employees feel more welcome to bring their different backgrounds and experiences, adding and enhancing productivity as a team member.
Familiarize employees with the resources: Any amount of resources created is only as good as its use. So, ensure that your employees are aware of the resources available for them. Ensure that every strand of diversity that comprise the workplace knows about the resources at their disposal. Empower them with the information and resources, enabling them to do the best with the resources.
Re-evaluate and reset: It is important to re-evaluate your equity practices often. For a growing workplace to benefit from its diversity practices, it has to have a periodical evaluation of the practices. Revisit the policies based on the feedback and reset them to cater to the needs. Equity is a changing concept when the team is growing.
With efforts to mainstream marginalized communities, equity becomes an essential driver in the journey of diversity and inclusion, making it imperative for leaders to keep it on top of their agenda.
- With close to 15 years of experience in journalism across beats in multiple mediums, Janani Sampath is senior content writer and assistant editor, Diversity Digest.