Catering to Diverse Candidates: Actionable Solutions to Implement Now

A wholesale solution to the diversity challenge is a pressing concern to HR leaders. In the digital era, the most compelling solution is a candidate engagement platform. It enables the three key components of a diverse talent acquisition strategy – granular content creation, storytelling and scalability to be actioned.

But with a huge selection of content repositories offered by ever-expanding HR technologies, the need to actively consider what’s on offer is essential before committing to the platform that delivers the solution to your diversity recruiting pain points.

Meeting the Diversity Demand:

With the drive to strengthen diversity and foster inclusivity, hiring priorities have shifted. The demand for diverse talent has created a diversity challenge that continues to be an increasingly pressing concern for companies – especially as efforts to target these candidates are expanding.

With this considered, your company must distinguish itself from competitors through the content you make available to diverse candidates. To do so, you need to take an itinerary of what you already have. Through the critical examination of your content and its messaging, you can synthesise clear diversity actions for your company.

And that’s where we can help.

Through the analysis of 25,000+ questions across our platform, combined with data obtained from a survey of 200 HR leaders and 1,000 candidates across the UK, US and France, we have provided substantive insight into what diverse candidates want to hear. Our proprietary research has culminated in a three-pronged action plan that outlines how you can cater to diverse talent.

Based on this, we believe that Talent Attraction and Employer Branding leaders should adapt their communication across their key touchpoints for attracting diverse talent; after all 57% of 200 TA & EB leaders believe that candidates were lost after visiting their website before applying.

Overcoming the diversity challenge requires actionable changes to your existing strategy. There is no need to reinvent the wheel. With both a content and persuasion gap limiting the efforts of your diverse talent attraction initiatives, the time to adopt a comprehensive solution is now.

Not Perfect, but Promising

Diverse candidates can afford to be picky in a recruiting climate that is becoming more focussed on them. With this comes the threat of them seeking perfectly implemented diversity and inclusion practices.

Traditional approaches to projecting the efforts of diversity initiatives are rigidly confined to stock photo imagery and curated corporate content. To most diverse candidates, this content misses the mark. It is both inauthentic and unpersuasive, leaving them increasingly doubtful of your commitment to diversity and inclusion.

To the perfection-seeking candidate, however, this may sell. But this brings a potential risk of a high churn rate – with consequences for your company, including:

  • higher operating costs as employee replacement surpasses their annual compensation1
  • declining employee engagement and revenue2
  • and a limited ability to attract more high-quality talent.

Ultimately, the cost of recruiting is raised and diversity in the workplace is further stifled3.

But you can work with the current state of diversity representation and policies in your company, even if they are far from perfect.  

We offer three diversity actions your company can take to improve representation and attract diverse candidates and discuss how they can be tied together in one simple solution.

Want to find out what your candidates want to hear from you? Download our eBook on Diversity Recruiting now

Actionable Solutions to your Diversity Challenge

Satisfying the Need for Specific Content

According to Deloitte’s research4, millennials move far beyond the integration of demographic differences when defining what diversity means to them. Their perception is one that aligns with your company’s – a bottom line that is purposeful and innovative, achieved by the blending of unique perspectives that come with individuals’ differences in background, experiences, and style. As a team working generation, millennials want to collaborate and integrate to foster innovation and business impact.

Having identified the definition of diversity that millennials adopt, consider what they want from their candidate experience. As our candidate experience eBook revealed, addressing the content gap by telling stories across a wide range of topics is a necessary element. Therefore an information-driven candidate experience is key to drive diverse talent acquisition – and this information provides the your first diversity action in the workplace.

To deliver tailored answers to specific questions. 

We determined the demand for specificity through analysis of 25,000 diversity-related questions posted across our PathMotion platform globally. This revealed that the granular questions being asked broadly fit into three categories –  depending on which groups are asking them:

  1. Eligibility i.e. Are bachelor degree candidates eligible for an off-cycle internship?
  2. Fit i.e. What business area could I go into following a career in military intelligence?
  3. Work environment i.e. Are there many senior openly out LGBT people at Citi?

The specific content that these types of questions generate are distinct from the general content made available on your career site; whilst your branded content conveys your company’s values, they lack the substance afforded by detail. The information needs to identify and serve the niche interests of your audience. By narrowcasting, your content production efforts are upscaled because the granularity of our concerns and interests are nearly infinite. Add time and inevitable shifts in diverse candidates’ priorities, and the content just keeps giving.

But how do you deliver granular content?

Granular content can be created through two-way engagement with candidates and your employees, both of which are best placed to answer granular questions. By asking highly specific questions, diverse candidates generate responses that go on to make up the site’s granular content. A plausible means of doing is via a two-way candidate engagement platform through which granular content is built and published as more conversations are initiated. This solution works in real-time, all the time, and overcomes the problems of FAQs which are limited in their specificity and relevance.

At present, addressing diverse candidates’ queries occurs through less connected mediums – namely by email or phone. The reach of this content is limited and often HR teams are asked the same questions. This restriction of reach means that it is not the most efficient use of your company’s time. 

Want more? Check out our comprehensive guide for an in-depth breakdown of diverse talent acquisition. In it, we review the challenges and benefits and give you concrete actions to take to expand your diversity talent pool.

The need to generate granularity has been stated, but why is it important?

Because the acquisition of diverse talent is achieved through granular content. Granular content is distinguishable from the generic content disseminated by companies – its specificity piques the interest of diverse talent.

Without it, the visibility of your career sites on Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs) is obscured by the competition of similarly metered content. By creating specific content, not only do you address the questions candidates want answers to, you also ensure your content is optimised for search.

Storytelling as a Weapon of Success

Diversity is not more than simply meeting compliance targets but tapping directly into the diverse perspectives and approaches individual employees bring to the workplace.

According to Talent Board, since 2010 over 1,000 organisations globally have worked to define and measure candidate experience5.  This evidences the pivotal role that both candidate experience and branding play in a company’s ability to attract diverse talent. And what better way to deliver an exceptional candidate experience than to tell a story? Stories, when told well, a have the power to stick, develop character affinities, drive decisions and persuade through their relatability. 

Our previous research, in collaboration with Immersion Neuroscience, revealed that, relative to the career site, stories are immersive. Immersion indicates attention and engagement, which encourages persuasion, and likely action a person takes. The digital space – the medium through which companies focus their recruitment efforts – can be transformed by narratives; they possess the unique ability to merge the roles of both the storyteller as the listener – your diverse talent pool.

Therein lies a second diversity action in the workplace. Personal storytelling can be leveraged to frame the context of fair policies – as 54% of diverse candidates believe the latter is a primordial tool to assess your efforts.

The stories you provide need to go beyond text-based responses; video responses offer an edge. Visual content is a highly relevant medium of consumption for Generation Z and Millennials. YouTube, Instagram and Snapchat are platforms dedicated solely to this type of content; so switch up your granular content delivery and satiate diverse candidates’ appetite for specific information by delivering your stories in video format. Level up, and employ storytelling as your next diversity action in the workplace and adopt the best practices (as we’ve outlined here) for creating video content to ensure you get the most from your efforts.

Scaling new (Social) heights with your Diverse Workforce

To advocate is to represent (as we’ve discussed here). Diverse talent acquisition is achieved through representation. Employee advocacy transforms traditional social selling from a cold-call approach to one that generates impact through the credibility afforded by employees’ voices. 

After all, how better to understand and respond to diverse candidate needs than by tapping into diverse employees?

First, start with your in-person recruitment fairs and conferences; particularly as 23% of diverse candidates are visiting your campus fair and events. But as one of our candidates Sam pointed out, you need to be sending people that represent your diverse workforce. At these events, appearance is everything; ensure that your employee advocates are truly reflecting the scale of diversity in your workplace.

But to create the most impact, your advocacy-based representation needs to be carried out at scale.

With this in mind, HR leaders can increase the reach of their existing talent acquisition strategy by collaborating with diverse advocates. With employees averaging 10 times more connections on social platforms than their employers6 and their advocacy driving five times more web traffic to a company’s career site, it would be detrimental not to leverage their persuasion. 

Use their persuasion as a diversity action in the workplace – have your existing employee advocates provide their authentic and specific stories at scale. Scaling requires companies to think beyond their career site, and consider all their communication channels.

Indeed, our research shows that 32% of diverse candidates are engaging with social media posts, groups and networks in their search for social proof. So spread their stories across Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram. With social recruiting emerging as an increasingly productive way to source diverse candidates, these sites must also deliver the same degree of granularity as your career site.

Collectively, the creation of highly specific content, achieved by a direct employee-candidate exchange across several platforms –  your career site, social media channels and chatbot conversations – your recruitment channels are both optimised for search and relevant.  

But the most optimised way to scale is through a candidate engagement platform. Particularly as it offers integration, and Integration supports scaling through the additional reach afforded by social media sharing.

This will help push your company up through search rankings, and increase its visibility, distinguishing it from your competitors. So scaling employer advocacy offers the third and final diversity action for your company.

What does the ideal Candidate Engagement Platform look like?

Our recent eBook: what’s on candidates’ minds? Details how PathMotion have deconstructed the challenge of diversity recruiting.

Our research has allowed us to synthesise three interlinked diversity actions in the workplace

First, companies must overhaul their content creation strategies by providing the granular content that diverse candidates are actively seeking.

Second, the content needs to embody the voices of your diverse workforce, telling a story to elicit the engagement that drives talent acquisition.

Third and finally, scale, scale, scale! Your diverse representatives are only so many, so expand their audience by empowering them to deploy their content across not only your career site but your collaterals too.

These three solutions can be implemented (to a degree) using your existing site – but further amplified using a Candidate Engagement Platform.

Your chosen solution must be able to facilitate authentic exchanges whilst also giving you sufficient means to manage that information flow. But integration is key. A comprehensive solution is more than just limiting the highly specific content to your career site and collateral.

Consider employing an all-inclusive platform that can work across several of your key touchpoints – beginning with your career site. Alone, the platform will delegate the task of diverse candidate engagement. As an integrated feature, the granular content being built through two-way conversations reaches diverse candidates on their preferred medium of consumption and improves your SEO.

The solution appears demanding but rest assured that you don’t need to reinvent the wheel. An ideal Candidate Engagement Platformshould function seamlessly with the technology you have, integrating with both your sourcing efforts and applicant tracking system (ATS).

Current market options are limited – with a reel of companies providing segmented services that are restricted to certain stages of the recruitment funnel, the ideal candidate engagement software seems elusive. 

But PathMotion is pioneering; we offer a comprehensive solution to candidate engagement. We provide a branded discussion platform where employees provide the granular content diverse candidates are seeking through their stories, in text and video. This content is created by the candidate engagement platform itself – diverse candidate’s questions generate employee answers. See how the NHS uses diverse employees stories to address granular questions:

This  specificity generates relevance,  relevance boosts engagement, engagement boosts conversion. 

Our integrated platform goes one step further – we offer a chatbot that retargets granular content to candidates on the platform and live chats that facilitate real-time engagement with employees.

Then, through our social media tool, we can disseminate this content across your key social touchpoints and SEO optimisation ensures the relevancy of the content generated is reflected in searches. We can tell you what diverse candidates are asking and help you gear your touchpoint messaging to match – deploying an intelligence-based SEO strategy.

Lastly, through our TalentSourcerTM, candidates exhibiting the most interest in joining your company are identified and automatically re-engages them with targeted content from discussions between diverse candidates and ambassadors.

Our platform is pioneering, enhancing the delivery both your employer brand and candidate experience through the generation of granular content.

Through PathMotion, companies across 15 different sectors, including Deloitte, Accenture, the NHS, Citi and more have increased their qualified applications by over 200% and improved the acceptance rate of 65% of their hires.

1 – Huffington Post, How Much Does Employee Turnover Really Cost? article, 2017

2 – Dailypay, Why Employee Turnover Is Also Bad For Your Employees, 2018

3 – Harvard Business Review, Firms Are Wasting Millions Recruiting on Only a Few Campuses, 2015

4 – Deloitte, The Diversity and Inclusion Revolution, 2018

5 – Talent board, North American Candidate Experience Research Report, 2017

6 – 7 Stats That Prove Your Employees Are Your Secret Recruiting Weapon, LinkedIn Talent Blog