Employees want an inclusive workplace, but employers are falling short
- A majority of employees (78%) say a workplace where people are treated equally — regardless of gender, sexual orientation, age, race or religion — is important to them, according to the results of a new Randstad US survey. However, more than half of companies are not meeting this expectation, as 56% of female workers and 52% of male workers believe their employers could do more to promote gender equality and diversity, Randstad reports.
- Other results from the study show that 80% of women would switch employers for improved gender equality elsewhere; 31% of women feel they have as many or more opportunities than men with their current employer; and 58% of women (versus 34% of men) cite a lack of promotions for women into leadership positions as the main cause of gender inequality.
- Audra Jenkins, Randstad North America's chief diversity and inclusion officer said in a statement that corporate leaders have a responsibility to invest in programs that will help retool and empower women for future success. "For companies that fail to establish an inclusive workplace, attracting and retaining quality talent will be a major challenge in the years ahead," she added.
As employees increasingly expect equality and inclusion in the workplace, employers may have to consider diversity efforts as part of their engagement efforts. Based on the results of Randstad's survey, strategies to recruit, retain and engage more women, nonwhites, LGBTQ workers and other underrepresented groups could reduce turnover.
The survey's finding that men and women both want improved inclusion seem to agree with those of a Boston Consulting Group study. The organization found that millennial men are among women's best allies in their fight for equality in the workplace.
Employers still struggle with the best way to implement these initiatives, but many are working to improve recruiting efforts, eliminate unconscious bias, and mentor underrepresented groups — without sending the wrong message.