How to Prove You’re the Diverse Candidate Recruiters Need

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Diversity hiring is more than just a trend. It’s a strategy employers will continue to prioritize, and it’s something you can leverage during your job search.

In fact, a 2018 survey from LinkedIn found 78 percent of recruiters believe diversity hiring is very/extremely important. Additionally, 53 percent have mostly or completely adopted it into their hiring strategy.

You need to understand how to present yourself as the diverse candidate companies need on their teams. This will take your job search to the next level.

Here’s how to prove you’re the best choice:

Demonstrate Cultural Fit

Remember, employers aren’t simply looking to check a diversity box. If you prove that you will add to and improve their culture, you’ll stand out.

The best way to prove your cultural fit is to show them in person. Request a tour to experience their culture and show how you interact with current employees.

In your application, use your cover letter to share a story that showcases you exhibiting values that align with the company. For example, if the employer emphasizes collaboration, share how you led a team project.

Celebrate Your Uniqueness

When you understand why employers are looking for diverse candidates, you can make a more meaningful connection with them during your job search. The biggest advantage for companies building a diverse team is simple — people with different perspectives work best together.

Research from Cloverpop found that diverse teams delivered 60 percent better results on the decisions they made, and they make better business decisions up to 87 percent of the time.

Not only are they creating better results, but also they act faster than non-diverse teams. The Cloverpop study found that teams that follow an inclusive process make decisions twice as fast with fewer meetings.

To put it simply, employers are looking for diverse candidates who bring new ideas to the table. People-pleasers don’t mesh well in diverse settings.

You need conviction and open-mindedness to thrive in a diverse culture. Show recruiters you’re not afraid to be unique by brainstorming and sharing your opinions — even if they’re different from your peers’.

Share examples of your best ideas through your online portfolio. For example, share a team project you created at a previous company and highlight how you collaborated well with your team to create a successful end product.

Connect to Customer Representation

One of the best ways to prove your value in the job search is by showing that you understand a company’s customer base. Employees who relate well to customers thrive.

Start by researching a potential employer’s customers. Social listening is a great first step. Pay attention to the online conversations customers have about the brand and their products. Identify their common concerns and pain points.

This shows recruiters you’ll add to customer engagement and satisfaction. Plus, they’ll be impressed by the amount of research you did before the interview.

Write a proposal for the role you’re applying for and use it to demonstrate how you have a keen understanding of the customer experience and their typical problems. In this proposal, include solutions and ideas that address the customer’s specific concerns.

For instance, if customers complain publicly about the slow response time to customer service questions, suggest implementing an AI solution that automates responses.

Bring a list of the best AI software solutions, with tiers of pricing and features. Review this with the recruiter during the interview and send it directly to leadership in the customer service department as well.

Being proactive in delivering value is your best approach to standing out. When you showcase your understanding of the customer experience and your cultural fit and demonstrate how you collaborate well with a diverse team, recruiters will take notice of you as their best candidate.

How are you proving to be the best diverse candidate during the job search? Share in the comments!

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Val Matta
Val Matta
Val Matta, Managing Director of CareerShift, co-founded the company in 2005 to help individuals bridge the gap between education and employment.  As a recognized expert in the field, Val is a frequent speaker on career management, networking, and job hunting strategies.  You can connect with her and the CareerShift team on FacebookLinkedIn, and Twitter.