Human resource diversity management practices in the Australian manufacturing sector
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We examined employee perceptions of the benefits and challenges of workforce diversity and human resource (HR) diversity management practices adopted in the Australian manufacturing sector. We found that overt discrimination does not exist in the Australian manufacturing sector. However, Australian employers appear to adopt a 'legalistic compliance approach' and have not considered workforce diversity as a source of competitive advantage. Employers have not adopted effective HR diversity management practices. The Australian manufacturing sector has failed to value diversity or capitalize on the benefits of workforce diversity. Inadequate recognition of overseas skills, ineffective communication, increased training costs and social isolation were perceived as the main challenges, whereas a stronger work ethic among multicultural employees, greater opportunities to learn from other cultures, lower absenteeism and less labor turnover were regarded as major benefits of workforce diversity. Overall, we found migrant workers are disadvantaged in the Australian workplace.
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