Broader Horizons: Recruiting for Racial Diversity

August 13, 2020
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Author: Glenn Hunter

It’s widely recognized that organizations with more diverse workforces have richer cultures and, often, a more dynamic pathway to business success. But achieving this diversity — whether by gender, age or race — can be challenging. This is especially so when it comes to race and ethnicity.

Employers in less racially diverse areas of the U.S. have barriers in creating a racially diverse workforce.

While recruiters and hiring managers may target more racially diverse candidate pools and spotlight diversity programs on their websites, their efforts will be far more challenging if they’re searching in areas that are not actually racially diverse. Conversely, their task will be infinitely easier in regions where the workforce boasts a racially robust mix of potential employees.

According to an analysis of racially diverse metros by LaborIQ® by ThinkWhy, metros that stand out as lacking in this robust mix include Pittsburgh, PA.; Provo-Orem, UT; and Indianapolis-Carmel-Anderson, IN. Whites dominate the populations in these cities, with 86.98%, 85.01% and 74.67%, respectively. The only other races with substantial representation in these cities are Blacks, with 14.43% in Indianapolis, and Hispanics, with 11.09% in Provo.

Less diverse U.S. metros chart
Source: LaborIQ by ThinkWhy

In sharp contrast, 10 metros in the LaborIQ by ThinkWhy analysis are much more racially diverse. When targeted by recruiters and hiring managers, these metros will offer rich prospects for diverse new hires, whether the organization has an office in the targeted city or is open to hiring employees who will work remotely from these areas.

Related: 4 Steps to Developing a Market-Value Employee Salary Structure

Although whites still dominate the population in each of these 10 metros, the percentage of whites tends to be lower than in the less diverse cities, and other races are represented in sizeable numbers. For example, in San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA, commonly known as Silicon Valley, whites represent 36% of the population, while Asians are 31%, Hispanics 21%, “other races” are 10% and Blacks are 2%. San Francisco-Redwood City-South San Francisco, CA, has nearly as many Asians as Silicon Valley, with 29%, as well as whites at 40%, Hispanics at 17%, 10% of “other races” and a Black population of 4%.

More diverse U.S. metros chart
Source: LaborIQ by ThinkWhy

Indeed, it’s only on the east coast and in Nevada that Blacks show double-digit representation in these 10 racially diverse metros, led by Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV, with 22%, and Newark, NJ-PA, with 17%. Newark also has the highest percentage of whites among the 10 metros, with 52%, while Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, FL has 51%. Orlando and Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, NV also have substantial Hispanic populations (with 26% each), while Asians are well represented on the east coast in Washington, DC (with 10%).

By tapping the power of unique data-analysis tools like LaborIQ by ThinkWhy, recruiters and hiring managers will be able to attract new insights and perspectives for their organizations with a more diverse pool of job candidates.

ThinkWhy continuously monitors and forecasts labor data at all levels, measuring impact to MSAs, industries, occupations, businesses and salaries across the U.S.