The HRM of a firm has a number of responsibilities that can assist in encouraging and promoting diversity and equality in the workplace. First, the HRM should be able to monitor the diversity within a workspace. Second, HRM may also be responsible for the widening of the talent pool, with the consideration for inclusivity. Third, HRM may act as a guide or mentor in a number of communities and the firm to communicate the varied opportunities to diverse groups of current or potential employees.
A number of strategies can be implemented to form a more cohesive and equal multicultural work environment. The HRM should be able to have strategies that can work around language and cultural barriers, employ a number of different communication styles, and allow for sufficient preparation time if certain task groups require it. The HRM department should be open-minded towards a variety of cultures and be mindful of differences, which will also require patient and diplomatic approaches and communication methods. Additionally, ongoing or other forms of cultural training should be prevalent within the organization, especially with the arrival of new employees.
The EEOC offers an intentional and authoritative approach to the investigation of charges of discriminatory behavior in the workplace, in accordance with the law. The commission also acts as a guide to federal agencies and governments on the topic of workplace equality. Primarily, the EEOC works to identify cases of workplace discrimination and settle the charges (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, n.d.). If the settlement is not successful, the EEOC has the authority to file for a lawsuit on behalf of the affected individuals. Additionally, the commission works to prevent discrimination by providing outreach, education, and technical assistance programs.
There have been six situations that were encountered in the firm that required the attention of the HRM. First, Paul is an administrative assistant who requires a ramp that can accommodate his wheelchair. It is required by the law that the firm install an appropriate ramp and is not allowed to terminate his employment to circumvent spendings. Second, Linda is applying for a job at the firm but is unsure whether she has to reveal her genetic predisposition to cancer, as the company may not hire her to save on medical expenses. Linda has no obligation to reveal her condition, as employers may only know about such a condition if she is under the ADA and if it will affect her ability to work or be safe in the workplace. Third, Joanna is five months pregnant and is unable to lift heavy boxes. There is no legal requirement to give Joanna lighter duties or keep her employed, however, a responsible HRM department or employer should work to accommodate the difficulties pregnancy can cause. Fourth, Pedro has made a complaint to the EEOC after finding out that he and an employee performing identical tasks for the same duration of time are receiving different salaries. Pedro may not be fired for making an internal or external complaint, as it is against the law. Fifth, Stephanie works with Amanda and Jose who speak Spanish during certain workplace tasks. Stephanie has raised a concern as she worries about safety due to the language barrier. Unless the employer can justify an English-only rule to be a business necessity, limiting workplace languages is not legal. Sixth, Amira is a practicing Muslim and wears a hijab, hr employer has mentioned that it makes customers uncomfortable and would like her to stop wearing it. The employer is unable to stop Amira from wearing a hijab unless it becomes an undue hardship, but as it is a headscarf and not bulky, it is unlikely that it can cause safety concerns.
A number of situations can be resolved with the help of EEOC guidelines, but many could also be reduced or avoided by HRM involvement. Many issues arise from misinformation, poor communication, or cultural barriers that should be resolved through dialogue between the conflicted parties and the HRM. It is the role of the HRM to maintain, improve, and promote the understanding and integration of diversity in the workplace to encourage cohesive workflow, efficient communication, mutual respect, and continued growth.
U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. (n.d.). Overview. EEOC.