Exploring the Findings: The Importance of Authentic D&I Action
Why representation and meaningful action is key
One of the most significant findings that emerged from our This is Black Gen Z report is the importance not only of employers taking considering Equity, Diversity and Inclusion action - but also of that action being authentic.
Gen Z are not easily fooled.
Just as they looked past the allure of beanbags and slides in office in favour of actual employment benefits, they are able to spot preformative action a mile away.
But what does authentic action look like?
Authentic action at its core is having Diversity and Inclusion efforts that are genuine and are designed to help diverse talent within your business - not just for the sake of looking like you are a company that cares.
One of the keys to this is representation. 69% of Black Gen Z said that they appreciate seeing people that look like them in job ads.
Gen Z wants to see themselves reflected in your business, throughout all levels. However, using countless photos of your token hire all over your socials won’t do the trick. Black gen z will go beyond that to look at the actual diversity within your team, whether this is on your website or on the employees listed on your company’s LinkedIn.
A lack of diversity in an organisation is a massive concern for Black Gen Z, as it indicates a lack of commitment to diversity. They are wary of employers that boast about their EDI practices, but lack representation as it indicates a lack of meaningful action.
Many of the Black Gen Z we interviewed also noted that it is off-putting if the diversity in a company is limited to junior positions, instead of all the way through to the top. This immediately suggests to them that there is limited commitment to diversity once inside the organisation, and that it may not be possible for them as black gen z to progress to senior leadership.
Furthermore, we learnt from our report that the research Gen Z does into a company before applying is more than you would assume.
While we already mentioned that Black Gen Z looks for visible representation throughout a company’s online presence, they will also do things such as read reviews of your company on sites like Glassdoor or even go so far as to connect to some of your current employees of colour to determine whether your diversity and inclusion practices operate in practice.
32% of prospective black gen z candidates will research you by looking at your company page or at your company’s listing on a careers page such as Glassdoor, 31% will look at your social media presence and 17% will reach out to your current employees.
Similarly, once working within an organisation, it is important to the majority of Black Gen Z that any instances of discrimination or racism are appropiately dealt with, and that the processes for this are transparent to all employees.
Progress will come from genuine intent and genuine action. Focus on creating an inclusive workspace, on acknowledging all employees’ contributions fairly and welcoming diversity of culture and identity.
That is the starting point, and you can build from there.
To take a look at further recommendations on creative inclusive workspaces, follow this link and read our report.