Employers should ensure that the training is customized to the particular organization in mind, paying special attention to how much training will support the company's leadership.

Fremont, CA: Many organizations are aware of the positive impacts of organizational diversity and inclusion (D&I), like increased profits, enhanced employee engagement and creativity, and expanded capacity to meet consumer needs.

However, many companies may feel compelled to move their attention from maintaining D&I to more time-sensitive issues due to the global pandemic triggered by COVID-19, such as adjusting to shifts in consumer demands, easing workers' transfer to remote work, and ensuring that timely production and development continues. However, having D&I at the forefront would probably help companies handle and adapt to these needed changes.

Effect on Discrimination Charges

Employment attorneys have seen a rise in discrimination complaints brought against employers during the pandemic. Making sure that a workforce has proper D&I training, such as instructing employees (particularly managers and supervisors) to communicate with others in a positive and supportive manner, is essential to minimize discrimination within the workplace.

Employers must, however, exercise caution when selecting the person or organization to perform D&I training, as insufficient training can lead to confusion and eventually ineffectiveness. Employers should ensure that the training is customized to the particular organization in mind, paying special attention to how much training will support the company's leadership.

Also, the introduction of D&I training would allow employers to review and strengthen current anti-discrimination, anti-harassment, and anti-retaliation policies and confirm that those policies are followed and adhered to by the organization.

Unprecedented Opportunities in Hiring

Unfortunately, many enterprises have temporarily stopped operations due to COVID-19, bringing recruitment to a near standstill. As economic conditions improve, however, and companies begin to resume full-capacity operations, they will need to resume recruiting and filling open roles.

Companies have a great opportunity during this time to examine the overall workforce and to determine whether they achieve diversity that is reflective of the community in which it operates.

Easing the Telework Transition Through Heightened Inclusion Efforts

However important workplace diversity is, organizations must also ensure that all workers feel valued in the workplace and that fair access to resources and opportunities is given to them.

Even organizations that have made considerable strides in terms of creating workplace inclusivity will struggle to sustain that inclusion when moving to a remote workforce in which all or most of the workers are teleworking.  Employers of remote workers, which have increased significantly in the aftermath of COVID-19, must now seek new ways of ensuring that workers are included in the workplace, even though they are not physically present.

This may involve introducing teleworking policies that develop remote work standards and provide ways for employees to address problems when they arise. Also, ensuring that meetings are open to all remote working employees, including consideration of those with children at home; and ensuring that the organization has developed guidelines for all employees to share information.

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