Diversifying the workplace by integrating ultra-orthodox employees bolsters social solidarity and breaks down polarization between the ultra-orthodox and secular sectors, according to a study conducted by Dr. Asaf Malchi.
The findings of the study showed that in the business sector, the main motive for employing members of ultra-orthodox communities was the economic incentive but that the biggest challenge of integration was the isolation of ultra-orthodox workers from the rest of their colleagues.
The isolation was found to be caused by social and cultural differences as well as being self-imposed by the ultra-orthodox people.
Another challenge reported by employers was difficulty on the part of ultra-orthodox workers to comply with professional norms like deadlines and justifying leave.
The study showed that successful integration of ultra-orthodox people into the workforce relies on acceptance and tolerance from employers as well as cooperation and commitment, especially because integration often means the employer needs to invest in special inputs and resources for those who are only beginning in the workforce.
The study recommended that employers be sure to prepare accordingly, and especially consult professionals, before hiring ultra-orthodox workers as well as set clear boundaries of accommodation and flexibility to the new hires.
Employers were also recommended to develop a culture of dialogue between ultra-orthodox employees and their coworkers.
Specifically regarding ultra-orthodox women, employers were given the suggestion to hire them in small groups first in order to make them comfortable with the integration.