Diversity drives results

AdRoll MD & VP sales Ben Sharp
By AdRoll MD & VP sales Ben Sharp | 6 September 2017
Ben Sharp

Here are five quick win top tips to increase diversity in the workplace from Ben Sharp, managing director and VP sales, APAC, AdRoll.

There are many studies out there showing that a diverse workforce brings a diverse mix of ideas and skills to the workplace. And when you working for a fast moving startup, fresh exciting ideas are encouraged.

A McKinsey report from 2015 shows that the companies in the top quartile for ethnic diversity across management are 35% more likely to see returns above their industry mean, and those in the top quartile for gender diversity are 15% more likely to have returns above the industry mean. So not only does a diverse team mean more exciting ideas but a better performing business as well. Win win, if you ask me.

One of the first things to remember is that diversity is so much more than ethnicity, religious beliefs, gender, disability or sexual orientation. It’s also age, what level of education someone has, where they grew up and many more factors.

A few things we’ve employed at AdRoll to ensure that we are as inclusive and diverse as possible are:

Writing open job descriptions

We use a program called Texito which eliminates bias language from job descriptions. By starting the process of hiring for an inclusive and diverse workforce right ,you’re giving yourself the very best pool of candidates.

Ensuring unconscious bias is eliminated

Firstly understanding that unconscious bias is real and a part of most people’s thought process. Our brains tend to naturally want to categorise people and that can be hugely detrimental during the hiring process. Investing in training for your whole team is ideal but at the very least the interview group should be professionally trained.

Diversifying your interview panel

Our interview panel is a diverse group of Rollers. We have a thorough interview process and we try to have people from different roles, genders, ethnicities interview each candidate. As mentioned each and every interviewer is put through a rigorous interview and unconscious bias trainings.

Raising awareness

Encourage open forums to discuss inclusion and diversity. Once a quarter we have an open discussion where employees are encouraged to share stories and educate each other. We have an internal committee called OneRoll that hold regular events to bring awareness to different cultures within the Sydney office.

Regularly checking in with your teams

We hold an annual diversity and inclusion (D&I) survey globally where we track closely how the company as a whole, each office and each team are feeling about the company's approach to not only diversity and inclusion but also belonging.

Both the tech and advertising industries are relatively small in Australia and candidates tend to move around. Looking outside of the normal pool of potential employees can open up a group of people with transferable skills. You can always teach about the industry, but look for the right attitude and X factor to make your company not only a desirable place to work but as successful as possible.

By AdRoll managing director and VP sales, APAC, Ben Sharp.

Is your audience who you think it is?

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