What We Learnt From Target’s Diversity And Inclusion Strategy

What we learnt from Target's diversity and inclusion strategy

Having a diversity and inclusion strategy for an organization helps foster a diverse workplace where everyone feels comfortable and accepted and to leverage diversity as a driving force for growth and competitive advantage.

Before a recruitment firm develops a diversity and inclusion strategy, it’s critical to recognize the negative effects of non-inclusive policies, processes, and behavior by recognizing the barriers and opportunities that influence the diversity of hire and continuing talent management.

This comprises a thorough examination of policy and procedure documentation for all or portions of the employee life cycle, from recruitment to retirement.

Target's diversity and inclusion strategy: Eli's quote

There are numerous reasons why it should be a long-term plan, one of which is that firms now have more access to talent.

What is Target’s D&I Strategy?

Target values diversity and strives to provide equal opportunity for all employees.

Their DE&I strategy is divided into four sections:

  • Creating a welcoming environment for visitors
  • Working in a welcoming environment
  • Ensuring that their workforce is diversified.
  • Using their power to establish a positive difference in society.

How to Implement D&I strategy in Your Workplace?

Employers utilize diversity, equity, and inclusion strategies to meet regulatory requirements as well as to improve the bottom line by having a more varied, equitable, and inclusive workforce. There are four basic stages to developing a diversity and inclusion strategy (DE&I) strategy:

  1. Gathering and analyzing data to evaluate the need for change
  2. Creating a strategy that aligns with the company’s goals.
  3. The initiative’s implementation
  4. The plan’s evaluation and ongoing audit

These primary phases are broken down into action steps that employers can take to build a DE&I effort in the following ways:

1. Hire for diversity

Workplace diversity starts with hiring. Recruiters must use ATS to promote diversity in hiring.

This is so important because companies can talk about diversity all they want if they don’t commit to making a real change in their own business And it all starts with employing a broad pool of individuals.

How do you recruit for diversity? Here are a few suggestions:

  1. In your employment postings, emphasize diversity
  2. Use a variety of employment boards (such as Diversity Working, Hire Autism, Recruit Disability, etc.)
  3. Request a variety of recommendations
  4. Implement blind resume parsing
  5. Organize a variety of interview panels for prospective candidates
  6. Recruiters must know how to avoid biases

Slack sought out candidates from outside programmer pipelines recruitment through all-women coding camps and initiatives that train black and Latino programmers

Target maintained its industry-leading representation within its board of directors; one-third of its members are women, and nearly half are Latino or Black.


Recommended ebook: 10-Step Diversity Hiring Handbook


2. Compile Data

An employer can better understand the diversity of its employees and the equality of its internal processes by collecting data on employee demographics, as well as identifying any areas of concern or trends.

These data have previously included federal and state-protected categories.

Other criteria, such as personality type and thinking/learning style, may also be useful, though national comparison data on these may be difficult to come by.

If this is the case, a manager needs to track its own data on these categories over time to see if any changes are required.

A recruiter can make use of some of the best Applicant Tracking Systems to track down the candidate’s data.

Demographic data may include the following:

  • Age
  • Ethnicity/national origin
  • Family status
  • Gender
  • Language
  • Personality type
  • Physical characteristics
  • Race
  • Religion, belief, and spirituality
  • Sexual orientation
  • Thinking/learning styles
  • Veteran status

This data would be useful for gathering information about the current company culture regarding DE&I.

In 2020, Target released its first disaggregated Workforce Diversity Report (based on 2019 data) that breaks down racial and gender data across all levels of their organization, allowing them a deeper look at what’s going well and what they can do better.

Tracking and analyzing this data against Target’s goals and commitments is one way they stay focused on the right areas as the whole team grows together.

3. Identify Needs and/or Problem Areas

Underrepresented or problematic locations can be discovered once data is collected.

Employers should start with a high-level look at demographics like age, gender, race representation, and equity and then dive down by location, department, and role. Problem regions can be identified by asking questions like:

  • Is management dominated by elderly white men?
  • Is it common for the accounting department to hire women solely?
  • Have opportunities for persons who speak English as a second language been limited?
  • Is the West Coast branch’s workforce more racially diverse than its East Coast counterparts?

Employee surveys can provide extra information that can help discover other areas of concern. Employee perceptions of culture may or may not correspond to survey findings.

If they do, the employer will have a better idea of what needs to be changed; if they don’t, the company may want to hold employee focus groups to better understand the disconnect.

If the statistics show little to no diversity in sexual orientation or religion, for example, it’s probable that people don’t trust the organization with such sensitive data.

The diversity of Target’s workforce has stayed stable from the previous report; 50% of their team members and 25% of their leadership team are people of color, and 58 percent of their team members and 50% of their leadership team are women.


Also read: Embracing DE&I At The Workplace – #1 Back To The Basics


4. Implement Ideas

Policy and practice changes, employee training, targeted recruiting, and employer-sponsored DE&I awareness activities for employees are all examples of DE&I initiatives.

To build momentum for the effort, develop an action plan to accomplish these initiatives by setting realistic goals and starting with the aspects that have the highest business value or are easily feasible.

An example of the plan is given below–

Initiative: Improve the R&D team’s cultural competence and decision-making to guarantee that the team can better leverage existing team diversity and capitalize on varied ideas.

Action items: Cultural awareness and competency training, team-building exercises, ongoing dialogue regarding diversity and inclusion with the R&D team one on one as well as during team meetings.

Timeframes: Team-building exercises: yearly staff retreat and monthly meetings; continuing dialogue: as needed and ongoing during staff interactions and meetings; cultural awareness and competency training: within six months to make sure that the team can effectively harness existing team diversity and capitalize on varied ideas through patience and inclusive decision-making.

According to Target,” It’s the people that count. We value the 400,000+ individuals who come together as a team to serve our guests.”


Also read: A Note On Our New Leave Policies


5. Start Employee Resource Groups (ERGs)

Employee resource groups (ERGs) are extremely valuable organizational resources that can assist a company in bringing together diverse viewpoints, experiences, and ideas from all levels of employees.

Typically, these groups are organized around a shared social identity, such as gender, race, ethnicity, or sexual orientation, or a life stage, such as parenthood.

Make sure that all of your company’s ERGs are inclusive and that any full-time employee is welcome to join!

The Estée Lauder Companies offers 30 employee resource groups with approximately 4,500 employees participating in total across all geographic regions. Employees founded each group, which includes groups for women, veterans, families, LGBTQ+ people and allies, and more.


Also watch: #Inclusion: An honest conversation | Upstox x HackerEarth


In Final Words

Before companies implement any of these workplace and diversity ideas, they must ask their employees what they want and which of these initiatives they want the company to implement first.

The company must take the specific needs of each underrepresented group into consideration.

There is no one-size-fits-all workplace diversity and inclusion strategy. Talk to all employees, listen to their needs, and start from there.

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