8 EMEA diversity and inclusion recruitment practices

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3 mins, 45 secs read time

With its diverse cultures and demographics, the EMEA region presents unique challenges and opportunities for implementing effective D&I recruitment practices. As D&I efforts vary across countries and organisations, we’ll explore the eight best D&I recruitment practices to build a more inclusive and diverse workplace that reflects the rich cultural tapestry of the EMEA region.

D&I in EMEA: Where are we today?

While the region has made great strides over the past few years, there still is a need for a more proactive and data-driven approach to D&I.

According to PwC’s D&I Benchmarking Survey, European organisations are struggling with translating their D&I strategy into action. Hays’ UK ED&I report also shows that 62% of professionals say their employer actively talks about the importance of ED&I in the workplace, yet less than half (48%) believe their employer combines discussion with noticeable action.

Meanwhile, in MENA, the Global Gender Gap WEF report 2023 reveals that the region lags behind in achieving gender parity. The region also loses out on nearly $575B per year due to female underrepresentation in the workforce, according to the OECD.

D&I meaning

D&I in recruitment refers to actively sourcing and hiring candidates from diverse backgrounds to promote an inclusive workforce. By consistently implementing fair and equitable hiring practices, an effective D&I recruitment strategy ensures equal opportunity for everyone to succeed.

Why is diversity important in the workplace?

Cultivating D&I in the workplace brings a myriad of benefits, including increased employee innovation, creativity, productivity, retention and an enhanced employer brand. Organisations that prioritize D&I recruitment practices will be better positioned for long-term success.

High levels of diversity and inclusion in the workplace are associated with greater productivity and performance, talent recruitment and retention, and workforce well-being.
International Labour association

Creating a D&I hiring strategy: 8 best practices for EMEA

1. Set clear D&I hiring goals

Your D&I goals have to be realistic as well as account for the complexities and nuances of each country and culture within the EMEA region. That includes various factors like social and cultural norms, legal frameworks and traditional gender roles which can sometimes impact inclusion and equal opportunities.

2. Measure D&I recruitment KPIs

Do you know the old saying, ”What gets measured gets done’’? In order to improve, you need to have a look at your D&I goals and define how you’ll measure them.

According to PwC’s D&I Benchmarking Survey, only 25% of European organisations have adopted this practice and fewer are tracking progress or holding leaders accountable for meeting goals.

Examples of D&I recruitment KPIs measure:

  • Percent of underrepresented candidates that make it to different interview stages
  • Average satisfaction score for D&I questions in candidate experience surveys
  • Percent of underrepresented groups (URGs) in senior positions across organization levels

3. Diversify candidate sourcing channels

Your candidate sourcing strategy needs to align with your D&I goals by actively sourcing candidates from diverse backgrounds. Explore niche job boards, social media platforms, internal referrals and partner with diversity-focused organizations to tap into URGs.

4. Develop inclusive job descriptions

Create inclusive job descriptions that are free from bias. Use gender-neutral language, focus on essential qualifications and clearly articulate your commitment to diversity and equal opportunity.

5. Implement anonymous hiring practices

Anonymous hiring practices reduce unconscious bias during the screening and shortlisting stages by allowing recruiters to focus solely on candidate skills and abilities. Make sure personally identifiable information, such as names, genders and ethnicities are removed from resumes.

6. Establish diverse interview panels

Interview panels composed of individuals from different backgrounds bring in diverse perspectives and reduce unconscious bias in recruitment.

7. Use interview scorecards

Interview scorecards tell the hiring team what they should be looking for during the interview and provide space for interviewers to leave feedback. Everyone on the hiring team needs to fill one in, which provides a more well-rounded perspective on candidates and yields more objective and inclusive hiring decisions.

8. Stay consistent with structured interviewing

The key to getting D&I recruitment right is doing all the D&I aspects consistently. Structured hiring offers recruiters and hiring teams the core framework and hiring tools needed to ensure a consistent and unbiased interview process for all candidates.

Download our guide How to be an effective assessor of talent to learn how a structured interviewing process can help you make more confident and inclusive hiring decisions.

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Injy ElDeeb

Injy ElDeeb

is an International Marketing Manager at Greenhouse with a flair for storytelling. When she's not busy working up content ideas, you'll find her curled up with a good book on the beach, cooking mediterranean food, traveling the world or hanging out with friends and doggos at the park. You can connect with Injy on LinkedIn.

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