Why is diversity important in the workplace

Almost all job postings will state that the employer champions diversity and inclusion in their workplace, but whether or not this is true or just a ploy to attract potential employees is uncertain.

Yet, what is the importance of diversity in the workplace, anyway?

If this is a question that you would like answered, then you have come to the right place. In this blog, we will aim to provide you with the answers to this question and more, so keep reading!

Diversity in the workplace

Workplace diversity refers to the cultivation of an inclusive work environment that is accepting of differences, empowering employees to engage, collaborate, and build healthy and long-lasting relationships with each other and the company for maximum business success. 

A diverse workplace is important in not only attracting the top talent, but also retaining existing employees as well. With a diverse workforce, different ideas and perspectives can be shared, allowing for vast creativity and innovation. In fact, one study from Harvard Business Review discovered that diverse businesses had a 19% higher innovation revenue, showing how diversity drives business performance. 

Respect and acknowledgement of differences can go a long way – making employees feel welcome and comfortable in sharing their ideas leads to a variety of perspectives and new solutions, effectively boosting productivity and contributing to the company’s success. 

How to incorporate diversity into the workplace

Although benefits such as paid time off, group life insurance, private healthcare, remote working etc. can be excellent in attracting and retaining employees, if the workplace culture is prejudiced or imposes stereotypes on employees of minority groups, then it could lead to employees leaving as a result. 

To counteract this, there are a wide number of diversity and inclusion initiatives that could be incorporated into a company to ensure that it attracts and retains diverse employees. Most importantly, businesses need to foster an atmosphere of inclusivity – a few examples in how businesses could do this include:

  • Implementing training sessions for new and existing employees regarding cultural sensitivity  
  • Developing policies and practices that reflect diversity and inclusion values
  • Ensuring that these policies and practices are upheld – setting diversity goals, monitoring diversity and inclusion efforts, hiring diverse talent

Reassessing and reviewing these initiatives often can also help businesses identify areas for improvement. 

Benefits of diversity in the workplace

A diverse workforce has a myriad of benefits for businesses which is why diversity is incredibly important. Several benefits of workplace diversity are:

  • Increased employee engagement – employees who feel more included within the company will become more engaged with their work and colleagues
  • Improved employee retention rates – employees that feel accepted will be less likely to stray and look for jobs elsewhere 
  • Improved company reputation – your diversity initiatives and values will surely be talked about by your employees to their friends and family, improving their perception of your company
  • Better problem-solving – diverse solutions can be provided from a diverse workforce, enabling decisions to be made efficiently and effectively 

The above list is not exhaustive of all the possible advantages of a diverse workforce. However, it does paint a picture that diversity within the workplace is a driving force for business success.