Over half of UK jobseekers look for clear commitment to diversity from Employers


More than half, or 58%, of professionals look for an organisation’s diversity and inclusion policies when researching a potential new employer, according to a new report from Hays recruitment

According to the survey, many professionals agree that a visible commitment to diversity would have a significant impact on attracting more diverse candidates, but 62% find it ‘hard’ or ‘extremely hard’ to find evidence of these commitments.

Professionals who look for this commitment most are those who work in business and professional services (67%), banking (67%) and education (63%).

A commitment to diversity and inclusion is more of a priority to younger professionals, as 65% of those aged 25 years and under said they look for this when researching a potential new employer. Fewer jobseekers over 55 years said they also look for this commitment (55%).

The survey also found that professionals in more senior positions place importance of profiling a commitment to diversity and inclusion in recruitment materials than those less senior. Almost three quarters, or 72%, of respondents at manager level or above said doing this would have a positive impact, compared to 66% at junior level.

Meanwhile 76% of respondents believe that using unbiased language to describe vacancies and culture would have a positive impact, despite 55% of respondents saying their organisation does this. Even fewer (42%) say their organisation has clearly defined, unbiased guidelines.

Ensuring that a website or careers site effectively captures and accurately represents workplace culture was another area identified as impacting attraction of diverse candidates. While 74% said this would have a positive impact, only 44% agree that it actually happens at their organisation.

Yvonne Smyth, Group Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, commented, “Our findings highlight a clear gap where employers are not appealing to a diverse talent pool when hiring. As so many candidates, particularly those new to the workforce, are looking for a clear commitment to diversity and inclusion from a potential employer, organisations are encouraged to take measures such as eliminating their language bias and promoting their commitment to fostering a diverse workplace via their website.”

Hays’ Diversity & Inclusion 2019 report surveyed 5,200 respondents.

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