Why Should Diversity Be a Priority in My Internship Program?
People of color and non-Caucasian people made up one third of the workforce in 2012. This is a significant portion of the population and the numbers are anticipated to grow, which is why it’s important to create an internship program that focuses on diversity, inclusion, and awareness.
Get the Best Talent
Aiming for diversity in your internship is important for several different reasons. Firstly, the wider your candidate pool, the more likely you are to receive the best qualified intern. By reaching out to different campuses, both college and high school, you’ll draw from a wide array of possible interns of different backgrounds, mindsets, and people who bring diverse ideas to your business.
Boost the Economy
In addition to casting a wide talent net, diversity also drives economic growth. For example, women make up about half of the labor market, and due to their increased presence in the workplace over the last 40 years, women’s contributions have donated a quarter of the current GDP. Not only does diversity help your business, but it helps the workforce and the economy.
Gain More Clients
Not only does diversity drive the national economy, but it can make your business more appealing to possible clients. In 2017, people appreciate and value diversity and that knowledge can sway a person’s opinion in favor of your business. If future clients see that you’re representative of the country and employ people who are brown, black, LGBT, or differently abled, you allow people to see your company values without saying a word.
Diversity is great for larger, societal, reasons, but it also boosts your staff’s creativity. According to a 2011 Forbes study, 85 percent of companies surveyed believed diversity drove innovation in the workplace. A diverse workforce allows a company to thrive in an increasingly globalized market, helps retain top talent, and encourages employees to pull ideas from outside of their cultural framework.
Inclusive Programs Increase Employee Retention
Although you may not choose to offer your intern a job once their internship is complete, diversity programs in the workforce help employee retention and satisfaction rates. If a company strives for inclusivity, they’re less likely to implement prejudicial or hostile workplace practices that often force employees to leave.
Diversity in your internship program is important because it inspires a sense of community, inclusion, and it helps add to the company’s image as a welcoming environment.