Promoting LGBTQ+ Equality in the Recruitment Process

By Vira Trevino-Garcia

As we continue to address flaws in the recruitment process, the discrimination that LGBTQ+ candidates face remains under-addressed. In order to create a bias-free recruitment and hiring process, it’s important that recruiters and hiring managers take deliberate steps to advocate for LGBTQ+ equality. As we work to attract top talent that is diverse, we must ensure that lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer job seekers feel welcome, safe, and encouraged to apply for open positions.

Here are a few suggestions to promote LGBTQ+ equality in the recruitment process:

  • Update your mission, vision, and values to express inclusivity on your website. Implement these updates into all documents so that inclusivity is woven into the fabric of the organization. Expressing these values goes a long way toward messaging that your organization is welcoming and safe. Scrub applications and onboarding paperwork to remove gendered language; for example, where applicants must choose “Mr.” or “Ms.”
  • Publicly support and partner with the LGBTQ+ community. Consider joining the LGBTQ Chamber, taking part in Pride events, promoting LGBTQ+ events on your social media channels, supporting LGBTQ+ charities and causes, and partnering with LGBTQ+ networks and organizations. These actions not only attract potential candidates and promote your brand as an employer, but can also serve to strengthen company awareness within the LGBTQ+ community.
  • Make sure to include bias and discrimination trainings for all employees. Your company’s values of inclusivity, equality, and respect should be communicated to employees of all levels. From onboarding through continued training, remind employees of how to speak respectfully, observe boundaries, and educate them on behaviors that are not tolerated.
  • Ensure that benefits serve everyone equally, regardless of their gender or orientation. Create a reasonable parental leave, not just maternity leave, seek out life insurance carriers that recognize same-sex marriage partners, and vet medical plans to include supporting the needs of transgender employees.

Updating the recruitment and hiring process to ensure all people from different cultures, genders, races, sexual orientations, and socioeconomic backgrounds feel welcomed will help create a diverse workforce and add to job satisfaction and retention.