While the unemployment rate is the lowest it’s been in 50 years, the demand for top talent persists, reported Randstad’s recent 2019 Talent Trends survey. The report found that as freelancers become a norm in today’s working world, the workforce expectations from contract labor isn’t much different from full-time, traditional employees.

The report surveyed 1,700 working professionals and more than 800 human capital leaders worldwide to determine the factors companies must prioritize to attract necessary talent. One major component was diversity and inclusion, the report found, with 72% of permanent talent and 71% of contingent talent highlighting its importance.

SEE: Transgender employees in tech: Why this “progressive” industry has more work to do to achieve true gender inclusivity (TechRepublic cover story)

“The expectations employees have of their employer are evolving and our latest survey shows just how important diversity has become to prospective hires,” Rebecca Henderson, CEO of Randstad Global Businesses and executive board member, said in a press release. “Employers looking to attract top talent must focus on communicating how much they value people and diverse perspectives, not just the financial value they provide.”

Companies are taking note, evidenced by the growing diversity and inclusion tech market. The global market for diversity and inclusion technology totals approximately $100 million, a previous Mercer and RedThread Research report found. These tech solutions are mainly used for talent acquisition efforts (43%), analytics (26%), development and advancement (19%), and engagement and retention (12%).

However, more companies need to focus on diversity and inclusion, and invest in this market.

The report also outlined the following five additional ways employers can understand and get ahead of talent expectations:

1. Create your employer brand with the real motivators of talent in mind
2. Avoid the pitfalls of a poor talent experience
3. Engage job seekers with the right combination of tech and human touch
4. Reskill your workforce to get fit for the future
5. Manage the risks of artificial intelligence (AI) and automation to create opportunities

For more, check out 10 things tech workers actually want in a company on TechRepublic.

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