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Jun 19, 2018
This article is part of a series called Editor's Pick.

Diversity and Inclusion is the hot topic of conversation for more and more companies these days. The importance of attracting a diverse candidate pool has become a mainstream conversation. Diversity doesn’t just mean age, gender, disabilities, veteran status anymore. Diversity means different. I think many sourcers don’t realize their state in this space, but in truth, sourcers can directly make an impact. So how do we accomplish the diversification task?

Why Diversification Makes Sense

From a sourcing perspective, diversification opens the horizon. Candidates from different areas have different experiences and therefore may have different ideas. Cross-cultural idea sharing can make us view things from different perspectives. For example, did you know that Indian candidates prefer to hear about job opportunities from hiring managers or social media versus recruiter or sourcer?

Please reference this article from LinkedIn Blogs that can give great examples and statistics of recruitment in diverse populations. 

Another theory on why diversifying candidate pools makes sense is supported by a study completed by Harvard Business Review in 2017. The theory is that “cognitively diverse teams solve problems faster than teams of cognitively similar people.  Therefore if more diverse pools are sourced, sourcers can help improve overall productivity.

Professional Groups

What professional groups are you apart of that can diversify your candidate pool? Have you spent time researching and finding relevant associations, networking groups, and publications that serve the communities that would be an excellent fit for your company? This research helps build brand awareness and will help create valuable network connections.

For example, if I need to diversify and target Latinos in the Washington, DC area, I could hop on to where can I run a search for latinos in Washington, DC within 25 mile radius. My search results can be viewed below.

One search result I get is a networking event in the area.  I will take it a step further and join this Meetup Group and get to know the administrator well. From there I can network and solicit referrals from this diverse group.

Social Media

Social Media is a great tool for expanding candidate pools by tapping into social streams for insights from Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Quora, Stack Overflow, Dice Open Source. It is important to leverage connections to request referrals and to ask for these connections to share jobs. I recommend, following competitors and connecting with others that follow these organizations. Developing discussions via social media to enhance more diversified pools and to expand outreach. My favorite of the social media tools is Facebook, and utilizing Facebook groups to find candidates that extend outside of the norm. Let’s say I am looking to diversify and find candidates of Indian descent in Washington, DC. I would utilize my personal Facebook search box and type in Indian Community Washington DC and then select Groups.  From there I would join varying groups to being my networking. An example can be seen below.

Refining Sourcing Keywords and Criteria

We can refine searches catering towards gender or nongender specific groups such as LGBTQ. For example, if I am searching for women, I can run a Google search for Women’s Only Colleges and Universities. The first search result for me lists the top Women’s Colleges of 2018. I would then in turn search by for candidates that graduated from these specific Women’s Only Colleges on Linkedin Recruiter.  Below is an example of a nongender specific search for the LGBT population.  One can pull a search for LGBT organizations directly from Google and use this list as a source for LinkedIn Recruiter. For one of my searches, I created the following string and searched on LinkedIn Recruiter which allows for the whole string to fit.

(“Al-Fatiha Foundation” OR “International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association” OR (ILGA) OR IGLYO OR “International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender & Intersex Law Association” OR “Accord Alliance” OR “ACT UP” OR “Advocates for Informed Choice” OR “American Institute of Bisexuality” OR “Association of Welcoming and Affirming Baptists” OR “Bash Back” OR “Bay Area Bisexual Network” OR “Bay View Garden and Yard Society” OR “Bet Mishpachah” OR “Bialogue” OR “BiNet USA” OR “Bisexual Resource Center” OR “Center for Sex Positive Culture” OR “Commercial Closet Association” OR “Connecticut Gay Men’s Chorus” OR “Consortium of Higher Education LGBT Resource Professionals” OR “DignityUSA ” OR “El/La Para TransLatinas” OR “Gay and Lesbian Employees at Microsoft” OR “Gay and Lesbian Labor Activists Network” OR “Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender and Straight Alliance ” OR GLBTSA OR “Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network” OR “Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles” OR “Gay Men’s Chorus of San Diego” OR “Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington D.C.” OR “Gayglers” OR “Gender Justice League” OR “GLAAD”).

The search populates 6,312 results of those affiliated with the few LGBT groups nationally.

Mobile Recruitment

Text messaging can help diversify candidate pools. Statistics have shown that millennial’s, for example, respond to text messaging versus via email. This can help expand the pool to encompass this challenging group to engage. Whatsapp is an excellent example of a texting platform with one billion users and that a recent study ranks second to Facebook Messenger. Once you download Whatsapp, you can create a list of candidate cell phone numbers and add them to Group Chat and share an update on positions with them. For example, I created a Group Chat of Human Resources Managers, whereby I can message the group updates on HR news which can, in turn, lead to someone inquiring about job opportunities. Of course, my ulterior motive would be to share job opportunities with them! Whatsapp also allows for you to know when a message was read which is a huge plus.


Next up will be a detailed outline of my favorite diversity sourcing search strings. Stay Tuned!


This article is part of a series called Editor's Pick.
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