With unemployment figures reaching new heights and markets conditions deteriorating, employers need to recruit the most talented employees if they are to maintain their competitive edge and have a workforce that reflects their consumer base. Arguably then, that means recruiting employees from a wide variety of backgrounds.
Overt discrimination of race, sexuality, disability, religion, age and gender is, of course, illegal and employers seem to be proactive in their attempts to eliminate barriers to recruitment, retention and progression. Yet the egalitarian discourses that employers draw upon in these practices, often account for less diverse workforces as a result of external forces e.g. particular groups do not tend to apply. However, these can often be caused by an organisation’s own internal discourses, which inadvertently deselect potential candidates with particular attributes and personalities e.g. advertising a vacancy in magazine targeted at younger people is unlikely to be seen by more mature candidates.
In a more challenging business environment, it may therefore, prove fruitful for employers to review their recruitment methods and dispositions.
The Times ‘Unemployment hits a 12 year high’
The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (formerly DIUS) ‘Professional Recruitment Guide’
Overlooked and underutilized: People with disabilities are an untapped human resource
Sense-making of employment: on whether and why people read employment advertising