Why Inclusive Workplace Cultures Matter
Why Inclusive Workplace Cultures Matter
This workshop starts with framing the business imperative of an inclusive workforce, including what’s impacting workforce shortages. Led by Jamie Millar-Dixon, D&I strategist.
(Jamie Millar-Dixon) Thanks very much and good morning everyone. We really appreciate you being here and taking the time to participate in this session. We’re just thrilled at the number of people who are here attending from various sectors and industries, many of the employers we work with, some of the employers through The President’s Group, and other employers who have just heard about this training session and wanted to part of it.
So I get to talk to you about why inclusive workplace cultures matter. So most of us are in this room because we are passionate about what we believe in this area and we’re looking for ways to share that with others, attract talent, and so on. If we look at this purely from a business standpoint, from a business case, we’re starting to see some really solid information around why this matters to businesses and to organizations. First of all, there’s a really great study out in 2017 by Deloitte looking at human capital benchmarking, right? Organizations, what they found is, organizations with inclusive cultures tend to be six times more likely to innovate, six times more likely to be able to anticipate change and respond effectively, and twice as likely to meet financial goals. Ultimately generating on average 1.4 times more revenue.
So purely from a business standpoint, there is an advantage. The question is, can we afford not to be inclusive, right? When we look at this from a recruitment standpoint and access to talent, being a diverse and inclusive employer is now recognized as a valued means to leverage recruitment and retention strategies.
We have some pretty solid data on millennials who are often the most sought-after demographic group of people in our workforces. They’ve indicated that 42% of them look for an inclusive employer. And Deloitte reports that 83% of millennials say they are engaged at work when they believe the employer fosters an inclusive workplace. Compared to only 60% say they’re not engaged, right?
I think this about sums it up, what we’re experiencing across many sectors, many employment sectors in this province. Pick a sector, really any sector, it’s happening, our workforce shortages. Can’t go too far without seeing “We’re hiring, Help Wanted.” We’re seeing it on store doors, on trucks driving by, on buses. Does this look like your organization? Yeah, we’re seeing organizations not be able to serve the business that they have. Restaurants in particular, not being able to operate to the full extent they have in the past.
A really great restaurant, iconic restaurant on the north shore, The Tomahawk, right? Can’t open in the evenings during the weekdays because they don’t have the staff to serve the customers.
Yeah, so we’re now out of our traditional hiring cycles and we’re into what I call just a continuous hiring cycle. Where we used to be able to rely on traditional cycles for recruitment, we’re out of those cycles. It’s continuous. Big picture in terms of what’s having an impact on all of that, well, our two major demographic pressures are effecting our workforce. One is the aging workforce and the shortage of available talent to go in behind.
When we look at our demand and supply in BC, we see we’ve got, from now to 2025, a prediction of 934 job openings. Some of that due to expansion, new jobs, some of that due to retirements and not enough people to go in behind. And yet, we know there’s only 430,000 new entrants to the workforce and that includes newcomers to Canada as well as younger people entering the workforce. Most of that employment growth is centered in the southwest part of the province, so here in the lower mainland, with the employers in this room. And we’re already in a deficit. So we’re already, as we head into, we feel that now and we’re going to feel it more as we head into 2020 and beyond.
We’ve known that those shortages are coming. They’ve been coming for years. I remember, you know, it’s been what, 28 years since I started in HR? But I remember a couple of decades ago everybody saying, “It’s coming, it’s coming, it’s coming towards 2015, it’s coming towards–” It’s here now, it’s here now.
Shortages in the top five occupations, five top occupational categories, 76% of those shortages will be in these top five occupations: sales and service, business and finance. How many of you in the room are in the service sector? Just a quick show of hands. Retail, hospitality? Okay, what about business, finance, and admin? Banking? Okay, great. So you know your numbers by now. In terms of the labor market outlook, life spans are increasing so consumers of products and services, we’re around longer to want to go to restaurants and access services as consumers.
The job growth overall is the strongest across the country in BC and in the private sector. BC also has the lowest unemployment rate in the province. We know that there’s an increased government emphasis on under-engaged, underemployed people in the workforce because we need all people on deck to serve our workforce needs and there’s more and more responsibility for employers to look at how do we engage this talent pool. What do we need to do differently? From a national standpoint, close to one in five Canadians have a disability and they represent as a buying power annually 55 billion dollars a year Our aging baby boomer population grows more each day and 53% of that population reports having a disability or is related to someone with a disability.
Business studies consistently show 90% of consumers are more likely to support inclusive businesses I mean, think about it, we like to see ourselves reflected in the organizations we do business with, whether we shop there, whether we dine there. The question is can your business afford to miss out on 20% of the job seekers? Or what about a 1% increase, even a 1% increase in employee engagement, right? So here’s the challenge, and many of you who have embarked down this road, down this journey, have a strategic goal set at a corporate level. But if we look at this as a business strategy it drives return on investment. Higher consumer market representation.
We have access to skilled and educated talent pools. Increase engagement across all employees in the organization. We’ll often hear from employers that said, “It’s made us better managers. “The changes we’ve made in our organizations have actually benefited all our employees, not just one demographic group of people. And it’s helped us in shifting our practices and it actually means we’ve got access to really great talent that we otherwise would have screened out by making a couple of minor adjustments.”
So that increased leadership culture is there across the board, as well, as, an advantage. That’s it as far as I have for you at this point and I’m going to turn it back over to Barb to introduce our next guest speaker.