New LinkedIn Features Help Recruiters Improve DE&I Efforts

Global HR

LinkedIn’s hiring platform, LinkedIn Recruiter, has announced that it will introduce new, innovative features to make it easier for recruiters to effect change, attract talent, and build a more diverse talent pipeline to improve their diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) efforts.

Jennifer Shappley, vice president global talent acquisition at LinkedIn, said that these new features are designed to help recruiters maximize their talent pools, identify more diverse talent and hire more confidently.

“We know recruiters are often under pressure to fill roles quickly, but moving too fast can lead to candidate pools not being as diverse as possible,” Shappley said. “We are baking DE&I into the fabric of our product with these new features to help recruiters address their blind spots during the talent acquisition process.”

Giving Diversity a ‘Nudge’

One of the new features, Diversity Nudges, will alert hiring professionals when there is an imbalance in gender diversity in their candidate search and recommend ways to expand the candidate search to address the issue.

For example, if an organization is recruiting for an electrical engineer, Diversity Nudges might suggest adding skills such as data analysis and analytical skills to increase the number of women electrical engineers in their candidate search.

“Diversity Nudges provides visibility into and offers suggestions on how to improve and balance gender representation in talent pools within LinkedIn Recruiter,” said Hari Srinivasan, vice president of product management for LinkedIn Talent Solutions.

Gender representation continues to be an issue in executive positions nationwide. Just 9 percent of HR professionals describe their organization’s leaders as predominantly women, whereas 50 percent describe their organization’s senior leaders as predominantly men, according to a 2022 study by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).

“Representation matters,” Shappley added. “By making small adjustments as a recruiting organization, you can make a big difference in creating a workforce that reflects the world we live in.”

Another addition is “Our Featured Commitments,” enabling companies to highlight their initiatives in areas including DE&I, career growth and learning, work/life balance, social impact, and environmental sustainability through reports, certifications, articles, videos and other content, Srinivasan said.

New Learning Paths

LinkedIn Learning has invested significantly in DE&I learning content over the past several years and now offers over 475 DE&I-related courses across seven languages. The company has released several new DE&I learning paths aligned to the most common organizational objectives.

The learning paths include:

  • Recruit Diverse Talent and Promote Equitable Hiring: This course reviews best practices and strategies for a company to make their recruiting, interviewing and hiring practices more inclusive, equitable and authentic.
  • Manage Diverse and Inclusive Teams: Viewers can learn to identify the right talent, leverage their team’s differences, and foster a culture of inclusion and belonging.
  • Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging for All: This learning path outlines best practices on DE&I, with an emphasis on cultural humility and allyship, to help organizations understand the importance of creating an environment where everyone feels safe and supported.
  • Create an Inclusive Work Culture: Through this course, companies can learn to drive DE&I efforts to create allyship opportunities and a safe space for employees, helping to build an atmosphere that fosters collaboration, creativity and innovation.

“New LinkedIn Learning Paths [will] drive learners to actively engage in their DE&I learning journeys,” Srinivasan said.

Three Tips to Achieve DE&I Goals

LinkedIn’s new features come at a time when companies are having difficulties meeting their DE&I objectives.

A 2021 report by Harvard Business Review Analytic Services and SHRM showed that 65 percent of organizations say DE&I is a high strategic priority. Yet just 33 percent of companies rated themselves as being very successful at improving DE&I.

Naznine Tilak is the vice president of learning and development, and diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging (DEI&B), for software company Pegasystems Inc. in Cambridge, Mass. She provided tips for companies to improve their DE&I results:

  • Create visibility and transparency for DE&I goals. Like every business decision, it is important to make DE&I efforts visible, measure success and implement a mechanism to assess progress against goals that have been set.
  • Know that making progress on DE&I takes time. Therefore, it is even more important to accelerate on all fronts such as hiring, developing, promoting and retaining diverse talent, and it will require thoughtful strategies in each of these areas.
  • Consider employee resource groups (ERGs). ERGs play a critical role in ensuring that differences are welcomed, valued and celebrated. They also are an important resource to promote the voices of diverse talent.

Tilak noted that DEI&B is not the sole responsibility of human resources or top management—everyone has a role to play.

“In order to meet DEI&B goals, it is necessary to create accountability at all levels,” she said. “Along with accountability, organizations need to provide training, resources and support at all levels.”

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