Using Technology for Workplace Diversity & Inclusion – by Simran Oberoi

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When you think technology, do you think automation of people processes – like recruitment, performance management, payroll ? Yes, that is likely to be the thought process for many of us in HR.

But what if we notch it up a little higher – can we think of technology as a tool to reduce bias, to create the support infrastructure for differently abled employees, to create a workplace where different generations and their working preferences can come together cohesively?

So here are some basic and simple guidelines that you can assess from a technology perspective, to make your own organization more diverse and inclusive.

  1. Use technology to eliminate bias that can be present in various people processes – starting with recruitment, you can actually cover the entire talent lifecycle and assess where technology can play a role.
  2. Use technology to assist an employee or prospective employee who is differently abled but has the skills you need. Getting the right talent in a competitive world is a challenge. So the wider and more diverse your search pool the better it is. But your infrastructure needs to support that mindset.
  3. Use technology for simulated self-learning modules to tackle some underlying issues like recognizing your unconscious bias , managing real-time work situations without discrimination and so on.
  4. Use technology to empower your diverse set of employees to make their choices when it comes to things that drive and impact their engagement. Your millennial employee’s choice of his or her compensation structure can look different from that of your baby-boomer employee. But if assistive technology is available they can manage their own compensation structuring instead of HR doing it for them !
  5. Use technology to create workplaces wherever the employee is present – virtually ! That way you meet the needs of new mothers, those caring for old parents, those who live in different locations than where the organization is present. If the individual has the skills you need, you should be open to creating the office where he or she is !
  6. Use technology for virtual mentoring support and creating online networking groups – for those who are high potential and deserve to grow with the organization, such support irrespective of where they are located or how they choose to work, can be a huge motivator.
  7. Use technology to communicate your values as an equal opportunity organization!

These are just a few ideas to get us all thinking – Encouraging more of you to talk about this essential aspect and share how you may have used technology to improve D&I in your workplace.

By Simran Oberoi

Simran Oberoi

Simran Oberoi is an independent HR Consultant in Bangalore, with HR Advisory, Knowledge Development and Research expertise of over 13 years, in Rewards & Compensation, Diversity & Inclusion, Talent Development, HR & Social Media. She has worked with consulting firms like Hay Group, Aon Hewitt and PricewaterhouseCoopers in the past, in India as well as Asia-Pacific leadership roles. Simran is also a keen baker – you can find her recipes at https://ovenderfulhealthybaking.wordpress.com/

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