To address workforce shortages, RTO 9 embarked on a series of Workforce Development initiatives with both an immediate and long-term focus in mind. This included the development of a Workforce Development Webinar series. The first webinar related to Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) practices, as equity-seeking groups continue to face systemic barriers to employment. Employers may lack the support to create more diverse and inclusive workplaces, or may not be effectively recruiting and retaining marginalized groups.
To show leadership and encourage other tourism employers to make EDI a priority, RTO 9 has signed a workplace Charter of Inclusion with KEYS Job Centre in Kingston. Over the coming months, RTO 9 and KEYS will be working with employers throughout South Eastern Ontario on how to create a more inclusive work environment.
Why should I invest time and maybe money to adopt EDI plans set by other
organizations in my business?
- We all don’t know what we don’t know and thus having an understanding of the business EDI needs and how to form a doable and impactful EDI action plan that helps my business by collaborating with EDI experts and people from diverse communities with lived experiences is the best way to benefit from diversity to achieve my business goals and meet my social responsibility.
- Recognition: Once you complete your EDI action plan, you will be awarded and recognized by an EDI badge that you could use in your branding and promo materials. This badge will be recognized in the community and will be highlighting your business as a welcoming and Inclusive establishment. KEYS also would be happy to give your business a shout out to celebrate your achievement on their Social Media platforms.
What would I benefit from adopting an EDI?
- Include new market segments and thus increase market share
In the hospitality industry, success is largely dependent upon employee-customer interactions. Hospitality is an industry in which customer-facing representatives need to understand and appreciate different cultures. Tourists come from all walks of life, and the local demography of Ontario and Canada is significantly changing to a more diverse population. The ability of businesses and business representatives to connect with people of different ages, genders, sexual orientations, disabilities, socioeconomic statuses, and belief systems is key in making out-of-towners feel welcome in your establishment. Organizations that have representation of the community population promote a positive reputation, increase marketplace awareness, and generate a more diverse client base.
- Diverse organizations benefit from the widely spread positive reputation and are able to position their businesses very well in the market.
Nowadays, word of mouth and online reviews are some of the best ways of drawing in new and returning customers. By meeting the diverse needs of clientele time and time again, hospitality establishments can ensure a steady source of income, develop a resilient business model, and help employees and customers alike feel more at home.
- Increased productivity and creativity
As various cultures and backgrounds work together, the opportunity for increased creativity exists. This is because there are more people with differing perspectives and solutions to problems, allowing for a greater chance of a workable solution to a workplace.
- Supporting businesses in facing the labor shortage challenge by tapping on many untapped talents that have been underutilized for years.
I.e., Newcomers, Racialized, Indigenous, etc.…
- Diversity introduces opportunities to globalization
What could be better than having employees that speak the languages and having
connections in the courtiers you might want to partner with to exchange tourists and