How to Write Inclusive Job Postings
Language plays a powerful role in both contributing to and eliminating discrimination. Particular consideration is needed when highlighting inclusion in job descriptions and in corporate diversity statements.
The language used sets the tone for future employees and their understanding of inclusivity in your workplace. Some steps to consider when writing an inclusive job posting are listed below:
Review the essential functions of the job.
What are the essential requirements? What are the skills that are absolutely needed to perform this job?
Consider language around requirements.
An inclusive job posting gives candidates options of expertise and experience and speaks specifically to the requirements needed for the job. Listing very specific physical demands that are not crucial for the job can automatically stop a person with a disability from applying, even if it were something you could have made an accommodation for.
For more on this, see our Workplace Accommodation Guide.
Hire for Talent’s Sample Qualifications and Requirements:
Language that could create barriers:
- 10+ years experience in medical administration in a medical office.
- Valid driver’s license required.
- Experience working as a medical administrator, including managing patient appointments and requests and communicating with healthcare partners.
- The ability to travel and provide own transportation between Surrey, Burnaby, and Vancouver offices.
Use simple language.
Keep job descriptions simple and to the point.
State clearly all relevant details of employment including whether the position is full time, part time, casual, or contract.
Include a statement about your company’s commitment to diversity and inclusion.
See the following example from Vancity*:
“We value diversity in the workplace because it allows us to better understand and meet the needs of our members and the communities we serve. It helps us foster greater creativity, breadth of experience, and personal growth among our staff, and it’s essential to our
success as an organization. We want to ensure every job applicant is treated fairly and with respect regarding race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, age, gender, sexual orientation, marital status, family status, disability or conviction for an offence for which a pardon has been granted or in respect of which a record suspension has been ordered. If you are a job seeker with a disability and would like someone to contact you about individualized application support, email us at peoplesupportcentre[at]vancity.com or call us at 604.123.4567.”
Consider alternative formats.
Have your job posting available in various formats including HTML, accessible PDF with alt text (to be compatible with screen readers), etc.
Provide contact details and/or an accommodation note.
This allows candidates with disabilities to contact someone who is able to answer questions about the role and provide information about potential accommodations.
Vancouver Airport Authority’s accommodation statement:
“We are happy to provide reasonable accommodations throughout the selection process and while working at YVR. If you require support applying online because you are a person with a disability, please contact us at 604-xxx-xxxx or firstname.lastname@example.org. We welcome the opportunity to discuss accommodation of your disability and ensure fairness in our hiring process.”
Consider various ways of submission.
Candidates may wish to submit their resume, cover letter and/or application through email, video relay service, mail, or through your website.
Having a variety of options ensures that everyone has an equal opportunity to apply.
This resource is adapted from HireForTalent.ca.