Diversity Hiring, You get what you look for

Diversity Hiring, You get what you look for

People Science was approached by the Executive Leader of Human Resources of a very large international Information Technology and Telecommunications company whose board was expecting an increase in the diversity of new hires.  At this point, the company had already increased their total diverse employee population to more than 50%.  However, the board wanted to see an increase specifically within the highest paying positions known internally to them as the C band.  Their largest concern was a segment of the C band which was a high-revenue producing Sales group.  The group’s individual sales professionals averaged between $100 million and $300 million per year in revenue.  The experience level required was that all candidates have a minimum of 10 years selling high-value consultative services and systems.  The field of candidates had long been considered almost exclusively Caucasian American-born males.

Although Human Resources had been instrumental in growing the diversity of new hires for the C band segment from 10% to 36%, the board was insisting on this group reaching a goal of 50% diverse employment.  The Human Resources team had done their homework quite well.  Working with two independent consulting companies, data they collected and presented to the board stated that there were not enough diverse candidates matching the skill sets required for this segment.  Unless the criteria for employment were changed, statistics demonstrated clearly that no further increase in diversity hires for this segment was possible.

As such, the Human Resources team requested that People Science recruit for the position solely with the intent of collecting specific candidate data directly connected to specific candidates, in order to demonstrate to the board through first-hand information that there were not enough qualified candidates of diverse background available for hire.

People Science assigned a team of Recruiters who were charged with finding all candidates in the position scope and to track all data including skill sets, employment history, work experience, as well as ethnicity.  At the same time, the Recruiters were instructed that, at this time, only candidates who were of a diverse background would be considered for hire.

People Science Management fully expected to accurately collect data that supported the consulting company’s demographic findings.  It was our intention to clearly demonstrate that a goal of 50% diversity within the scope of the requested position was not possible.

However, working under the assumption that hires must be made, our recruiting team developed a plan that focused solely on diverse candidates with the required skill set.  Within two weeks they were not only filling the database with the expected candidate information, but they were in fact providing diverse candidates for hire.  Following this methodology, our client was able to reach their 50% diverse employee population within one year of our initial undertaking.


  • Via proactive recruitment, collect data that accurately reflects the lack of diverse candidates for the position within the scope
  • Organize and provide the data to Human Resources so that they can better illustrate to their board that the goal should be adjusted to represent true market statistics

Action Plan

  • Establish a recruiting and processing team that is driven to find the best candidates possible in the shortest period of time.  If goals are unattainable, provide goals that are attainable including time frames to meet objectives
  • Supply metrics weekly to Human Resources
  • Accurately track all data and prepare recommendations for future hires and future hiring plans


  • The mindset of the client and of our own Management team that 50% diversity could not be met in this sector of employment


  • Created new hires within one year that put the department at a 50% diverse population
  • The Board acknowledged and congratulated Human Resources greatly for their diligence
  • We all learned that recruiting first hand provides far more accurate data than market demographics would dictate