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In today's competitive workforce, it is important to be a good employer. But what about being an LGBTQ-friendly employer? There are many benefits for your company and employees when you implement practices that make the workplace more inclusive of diverse sexual orientations and gender identities. This blog will explore best practices for hiring LGBTQ candidates as well as additional resources on the topic of LGBTQ employment.
What does it mean to be LGBTQ-friendly
The LGBTQ community is one of the fastest-growing and most diverse communities in America. In fact, it's estimated that about 10% of adults in the U.S. identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT). And because this population is so large and includes people from all walks of life, you're likely to have employees who are part of this demographic at your workplace.
Therefore, being LGBTQ-friendly doesn't just mean having a non-discrimination policy for LGBTQ employees. It means providing an environment that they want to work in. This includes creating opportunities at your company where people of all sexual orientations and gender identities feel comfortable expressing themselves freely. It also means considering if the rest of your workplace is welcoming as well. For example, does everyone have equal access to benefits? What kind of policies are in place regarding restrooms or other facilities?
Being LGBTQ friendly can also be achieved by implementing inclusive hiring practices such as:
- Hiring from diverse backgrounds with different life experiences which include those who belong to the LGBTQ community.
- Tuning your interview process. It can be as simple as ensuring that when you meet a candidate, you include your pronouns. This can put a candidate at ease and demonstrate your commitment to inclusivity.
- Sponsor or partner with LGBTQ-focused business groups.
- Almost every college campus has an LGBTQ center of some kind. Contact them and make sure they know you're actively seeking diversity in your organization.
- Be loud and proud of your inclusivity. If you're a large organization, use Pride month as an opportunity to advertise your support of the LGBTQ community. If your budget doesn't fit that, find a local organization to support.
- Above all, train your management and recruiting staff. Education is the key to success.
Why is it important to hire LGBTQ candidates
Inclusive hiring practices are important for both your company's workforce as well as the LGBTQ community. Here are a few benefits to implementing inclusive policies:
- Attracting more qualified applicants - When you make it clear that diversity is welcome at your organization, not only will people from all different backgrounds come and apply, but they'll also recommend others who may be a good match with your team and truly believe in what you stand for. The best part? You're likely making many of these new hires really happy by providing an environment where they feel comfortable expressing themselves freely - something we all want!
- Building trust between employees - Imagine if one of your employees tells you that he or she is gay, but they're worried about how it's going to be received at work. Chances are this employee has dealt with discrimination in the past and doesn't want to feel singled out again because of his or her sexual orientation. By creating an environment where all identities are valued, you'll build trust between coworkers, which will then help build a strong bond between team members who believe in what you stand for as an organization.
- Increasing productivity - When individuals can express themselves freely without fear of backlash from other people in their workplace, there's potential for increased productivity. This means more creative ideas coming up during brainstorming sessions and more work being done without distractions from negativity.
Additional resources for hiring LGBT candidates
Here are some additional resources that you can use for your LGBTQ-friendly hiring practices:
- The NGLCC is the business voice of the LGBTQ community, the largest advocacy organization dedicated to expanding economic opportunities and advancements for LGBTQ people, and the exclusive certifying body for LGBTQ-owned businesses. Consider becoming a Corporate Partner.
- Reaching Out supports the LGBTQ+ MBA student community. Find networking events or become a partner..
- The Human Right Campaign provides a wealth of resources, including a series of "Who's Hiring" webinars the connects transgender and non-binary job seekers with employment opportunities. Find their schedule here.
And as always, you can contact the professionals at TransLucent Resources for assistance in developing an inclusive workplace. Contact us at [email protected] or call 888-506-1117.