Despite “well-intentioned efforts,” the technology industry continues to struggle with diversity, according to InformationWeek. The news service found that one in four companies said their teams were over 70% white, while 73% reported having no Black leaders at all in their executive ranks. In addition, the average percentage of women within technology teams was only 28%, said Nash Squared’s Digital Leadership Report.
Despite those gaps, InformationWeek said IT leaders can play a role in helping employers achieve DEI goals when they work closely with HR leaders.
“IT has an important role to play in recruiting for diversity. Partnering with HR and the C-Suite is critical to setting a realistic DEI strategy and achieving its goals,” InformationWeek said. “A more diverse IT department will see a strengthened culture and increases in innovation, job performance and company success.”
Steps Toward Diversity
The effort begins when a company diversifies recruiting and interviewing teams to ensure that there’s less inherent bias involved in the talent acquisition process. In addition, panel interviews are recommended in order to include “a diverse group from IT teams.”
Recruiting from non-traditional sources — such as diverse colleges and universities, job boards that target minorities and social media networks — is another way of being more inclusive. According to McKinsey, 44% of technology employees didn’t start their career in the industry. So, many people outside of tech could be a fit for open positions, markedly increasing the diversity talent pool.
Onboarding and inclusion initiatives can also have an impact on DEI. Continued feedback can provide insight into problem areas, while also helping teams to succeed and retain workers.
Another way to create an inclusive culture: collect and leverage demographic and sentiment data to find out where the company is falling short on DEI . By analyzing this information, employers can gain insight and build out plans to hit their DEI goals.