Employee Engagement

Why Is DEI Important For Employee Retention?

July 20, 2022
min read

DEI can be understood as diversity, equity and inclusion within a business. It’s more than just hiring practices and surface-level inclusivity, and instead relates to how you value each employee within the company and recognize the individual aspects of their character.  

Along with that, DEI is vital in the face of gender and racial inequality and works to eliminate these social obstacles within the workplace. Ensuring that all people have equal opportunities for success regardless of their demographic characteristics should be one of the most forefront priorities for any business. 

Healthy DEI practices in the workplace can further boost employee retention and increase the sense of loyalty an individual feels for their employer. Experience higher levels of productivity and employee engagement when you pay attention to how high quality DEI is implemented. 

This article will explain why DEI is vital for employee retention, so read on to learn how you can reduce turnover, boost morale and further the success of your business!

How Can DEI Help With Employee Retention?

Consider this study done by the Center for Talent Innovation. It focused on employee’s views about bias in the workplace and conveyed that if a biased attitude was evident, disengagement and team distress were elevated and retention was at an all time low. 

This study is relevant as it shows how damaging bias can be within a professional environment and focusing on DEI can help prevent these issues from becoming a reality within your business. 

Employees need to feel consistently supported and every individual should receive identical opportunities as their coworkers, regardless of their identity or background. If the expression of a person’s unique character and background is encouraged, the company will benefit from the generation of diverse ideas and multiple different perspectives collaborating together.  

In terms of retention, the promotion of diversity can help encourage a motivated workforce when success feels attainable, leading to higher productivity and engagement. They’ll definitely commit to the company long-term when their individual characteristics are celebrated!

What Drives Employee Retention?

There are four major factors involved in employee retention. These include employee satisfaction, helping employees feel heard and respected, employee benefits and promoting employee appreciation.

To understand how and why DEI is important in promoting high levels of employee retention, we need to understand these factors.  

1. Employee Satisfaction

An employee who is satisfied in their company and individual position is better engaged in their work and more willing to go above and beyond. Growth opportunities also provide a sense of satisfaction and fulfillment as they offer concrete goals to work towards.

This is why DEI is extremely important throughout the company culture, especially within leadership roles. By placing priority on the overall satisfaction of your team while they navigate through the organization, you can stay up to date with their professional development and monitor their growth potential too. 

By giving them the necessary attention they need to make individual accomplishments in the company, your employees will enjoy the satisfaction that comes with working in a stable, engaged work environment. 

Related: Top Employee Engagement Metrics to Retain Talent

2. Making Employees Feel Heard And Respected

Active and genuine inclusivity means creating comfortable space for everyone to share their ideas, opinions and perspectives about company aspects. DEI opens the doors to think about how these conversations can be improved and helps remind everyone about the role cultural and social implications have. 

By creating a healthy dynamic of open communication within your diverse workforce can help create a supportive atmosphere in which everyone feels like their voice and best interests are being heard.

Implementing this will also allow employees to come forward with new ideas and sharing their thoughts, ultimately creating a collaborative and innovative environment. 

One way to create avenues for open communication would be to set up systems to receive employee feedback. Employees want to work for a company that cares, and you can show them this by consistently asking for their input. 

By keeping DEI and communication strategies a priority, you can address any issues right away and avoid forming a disengaged, and possibly resentful, team that does not feel satisfied in their position.

This will help avoid resignations and thus high turnover rates, and will build a company culture that is instilled with trust.

3. Employee Benefits

Another key factor is the benefits that you offer your employees as these can set you apart from other companies that may only offer salary based incentives to attract new talent. Rewards and other benefits play a deciding role when an employee is choosing between jobs so it’s important to keep them in mind when maintaining a team. 

There are many options for employee rewards and offering benefits like health insurance and pre-loaded visa cards are excellent ways to keep your employees satisfied, engaged and fulfilled within their role.

One of the best rewards for both you and your employees is additional training. It’s crucial that your team feels like they can contribute to the company and carry the skills needed to excel. Skills development programs are a great way to enhance DEI outside of hiring practices. 

4. Employee Appreciation

Consistent employee appreciation will always be necessary if you want to maintain an attentative and engaged workforce. 

Extensions of appreciation are successful if the employee feels that the company is giving back to them and that they are a solidified member of the team. 

There are a number of employee appreciation ideas available out there and you can definitely tailor your approach to your specific team. 

DEI is important for meaningfully appreciating your employees and by placing a focus on it, you can help employees feel valued and appreciated not just for the work they do but also for who they are. 

Once the employee feels a deeper connection to their position, they’ll be more motivated to work efficiently and be consistently productive. 

You can celebrate the diversity of your team by implement activities such as a lunch celebration where everyone brings in their favorite cultural food. By placing an active priority on experiencing other cultures, you’ll connect with the employees that live different lives and bring everyone’s “normal” into the workplace. 

It’s also advisable to speak to employees of different cultures about the right way to go about celebrating their diversity, as they are the true experts!

What Are The Other Benefits Of DEI For Your Business?

DEI is important for employee retention but it also has a wide range of other benefits. DEI aids with building a positive company reputation, finding highly motivated people who will meet the company’s financial goals and generally boosts your team’s growth and development. 

The Society for Human Research Management reported that organizations who exhibit gender equity are 15% more likely to outperform the rest. Ethnic diversity means a company will be 35% more likely to outperform less diverse organizations. 

Keep this in mind and know that by placing DEI as a forefront priority, your company will perform better and be more competitive in other’s eyes!

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