Want more diverse candidates? Here’s how

Nov 9, 2020 | Diversity

New research informs six ways employers can attract and recruit more diverse candidates.

‘What do students want?’ by ISE and Debut asked more than 2,000 students about their views and feelings on job hunting and recruitment.

The research revealed some big differences in the ways that different demographic groups think about and engage with their careers and the recruitment process.

For example, only 64% of non-white, female, state educated respondents are comfortable with psychometric assessments compared to 83% of white, male, privately educated respondents, so may not be as confident through the selection process.

Also, non-white, non-Russel Group students are more likely to be focused on a specific career, so may not be thinking flexibly enough about their career options.

Recruiters aiming to appeal to a diverse pool of student talent will find plenty to act on in ‘What do students want?’.

Using key insights from the research we’ve identified six ways employers can attract and recruit more diverse candidates.


1. Right channel

Think about how you communicate with candidates as different communication channels have different user profiles.


2. Fitting in

The process of feeling confident about fitting in seems to be more important to non-white and female candidates, who perhaps have greater concerns about whether organisations will really be welcoming to them. Give candidates opportunities to see how they will fit in to your organisation. It’s important to make sure that these opportunities are positive.


3. Environmental credentials

Women are more interested in working for organisations that have strong environmental positioning. Be clear and positive about your organisation’s environmental policies and initiatives from the outset.


4. Cautious psychometrics

Less-advantaged candidates are concerned about the use of psychometrics in recruitment processes. Be careful and considered about how you talk about psychometric assessments.


5. Academic acknowledgement

Less advantaged students are more likely to want to be able to see a connection between their studies and their job. Recognise what students have achieved in education.


6. Location is important

Not all students want to be, or can be, mobile. Consider whether you really need to require students to be able to move and don’t assume that all students are geographically mobile.

Employers that heed the information in our report and develop strategies that are sensitive to different student demographics will attract the best, most diverse student talent.

‘What do students want? Listening to the voices of young jobseekers’ was conducted as a partnership between the Institute of Student Employers and Debut.


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