Minority Report

The war for talent takes on a new wrinkle. Recruiters scout minority talent to help their clients diversify

Recruiters at Spencer Stuart must try to present minority candidates for every search assignment, says Clarke. The firm's diversity practice employs a knowledge manager, who reviews periodicals, Web sites and other news sources for up-and-coming diverse talent. In addition to identifying candidates for particular senior roles, Spencer Stuart introduces promising minority managers to employers. "We say, here are two up-and-comers you may want to consider for the future," Clarke says. Forward-thinking employers who are serious about diversifying their top ranks quickly adopt such tactics to track emerging young talent. The many that don't are losing ground in this area, she adds.

Recruiters also are teaming up with professional-development organizations that can help to identify minorities with potential. These include the National Black MBA Association, the National Society of Hispanic MBAs, the Hispanic Alliance for Career Enhancement, the Executive Leadership Council and industry-specific organizations. International executive-search firm Ray & Berndtson is partnering with the National Association for Multi-Ethnicity in Communications (NAMIC), a Costa Mesa, Calif.-based organization for minorities in the cable and telecommunications industry. The company is sponsoring events such as Cable Diversity Week, which is run by a number of diversity organizations, including NAMIC, says Tracy O'Such, a managing partner based in Ray & Berndtson's New York office. "The challenge is to find high-caliber diverse individuals in relevant industry sectors," she says.

Relationship recruiting

The most desirable candidates tend to fall into the "passive job seeker" category -- they are employed and succeeding in their jobs but are open to new opportunities, says Billy Dexter, president of Hudson Inclusion Solutions, part of Hudson Highland Group. "This is the group that corporate America really wants to get its hands on,"

I could write forever on this subject but it is late so I won't. I will however take the time to poke fun at Hudson Highland: "inclusion Solutions?" Yuck! I guess calling it "exclusion solutions" i.e. "no white guys allowed" was just too negative eh???

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