Why Diversity Is Important for Your Development Team

Always Aim to Work with a Diverse Team of Developers

Diversity has become absolutely crucial to the world of business. This is especially so as the younger generations join the global talent pool. Millennials are famous for their strong inclination toward inclusivity, and when they believe equality and diversity are at odds with a business’ way of functioning, they will rise up.

That collective voice of youth is much stronger than you might think. And the court of public opinion holds a powerful sway over consumers.

But it’s not just about the possibility of public relations nightmares that should drive your company to focus on diversity with your development team. There are a number of reasons why your business should consider diversity in hiring. And it doesn’t matter if you work with onshore, nearshore, or offshore development hiring firms or if you’re hiring developers for Java, JavaScript, Python, .NET, or Ruby projects – diversity applies across the board.

No matter the size of your business, the projects you plan to build, and the ultimate goals of your company, diversity should play a part in your present and future. And whether you use in-house developers or hire those from a third party, it’s time to expand your thinking.

Let’s take a look at some of the benefits of hiring a diverse team of developers.

Diverse Talents, Skills, and Experience

Think about it this way: If you hire the same type of developers, you’ll add more of the same to your talent pool. Those same developers come together with similar skills and similar experiences (both professionally and personally). How does that benefit your team (especially in this modern age of multiculturalism)? It doesn’t. Your team will be more of the same and will be incapable of expanding beyond a narrow scope of thought and experience.

By hiring with an eye toward diversity, your teams will grow in ways you never dreamed of. With a vast array of experience, talent, and skills, your project will benefit from different schools of thought, varied approaches to problems, and an expanded mindset. That’s a win-win for everyone involved. Your company will benefit from a more rounded team and your staff can learn something outside the norm.

It Drives Innovation

When you hire a diverse team, you get developers with more than just a new way of looking at a project. By hiring from a range of different backgrounds and cultures, you drive innovation in your company. A socially and culturally diverse team will approach a project from a wide variety of angles, with many solutions for every problem that arrives. 

If you hire the same developers over and over again, your path of innovation narrows with every iteration of the team. On the contrary, every time you expand the diversity of your team you broaden the possibility of innovation. New ideas, new solutions, new problems to solve.

Language Skills

Programming is a discipline that depends on languages and every software engineer is better served when they have more than one language in their programming toolkit. But let’s think of it in terms of the spoken language. 

Language barriers can either be seen as an obstacle for your company and teams or a chance to make it more relatable, global, and well-rounded. That’s not to say you’ll be requiring your teams to learn multiple spoken languages, but when people are faced with the challenge of learning to better communicate with one another, their general skills can improve as well.

And remember, those improved language skills will (indirectly) translate to improved programming skills. The more you learn, the more you know.

Larger Talent Pool

When you keep hiring the same type of developer, from the same time zone, with the same skin tone and native language, you severely limit your talent pool. When you diversify that hiring, you have an exponentially larger talent pool to hire from. 

With that in mind, why would you not want to venture outside your comfort zone? Hiring more diverse developers opens up a world of possibility. Look toward offshore and nearshore hiring firms to increase the talent pool from which you hire.

Improves Your Reputation

This might not have an immediate impact on your current projects, but if you want your business reputation to improve, one sure way to do this is to become more inclusive in your hiring practices. In this day and age, your company can’t afford to ignore the cancel culture and the court of public opinion. The opinion of the public at large can seriously affect how we view a company. When it is discovered that a company refuses to include diversity in its hiring practices, the domino effect can be profound.

To avoid that, begin to hire a more diverse range of software engineers for your projects. This will generate a positive buzz for your company, which will lead to more engineers wanting to work for you and more consumers wanting your products and services. 

Team Culture

Your company should be doing everything possible to build strong teams that are capable of creating incredible software. One way to help this along is by adding diverse cultures into the mix. 

A team culture with a variety of backgrounds, cultures, and working styles means your teams will enjoy more creativity and the ability to better bounce different ideas off one another. Along with that diversity you’ll have some team members who are great at thinking outside the box, others who know how to implement a solution, some who have uncanny insights into UX, and those who are amazing at communicating ideas up the chain of command. 

Team culture isn’t always easy to build and sustain, but by hiring from a wide range of cultures, countries, genders, ages, and mindsets, you can be sure that culture will not only expand from the jump, but it’ll also feed itself and continue to grow as team members get to know one another and diversity becomes the norm in your business.  

Conclusion

It’s 2021. Your business can’t continue to hire from a narrow scope and not be outed to the public. But it’s not just about your reputation, it’s about expanding the mindset of the company within and creating an environment that is inclusive and ready to grow beyond the norm that has permeated the company for years.

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