Diversity programs make companies more successful, but they aren't always effective and can overshadow job candidate qualifications, according to a recent poll of job seekers and human resources (HR) professionals. The poll, released earlier this month, was conducted by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and CareerJournal.com. The two groups did differ in their opinions of diversity efforts. Although the majority of HR professionals (61%) and job seekers (53%) agreed that diversity initiatives have made companies more successful, just 42% of job seekers (referencing their current employers) felt diversity programs were effective compared with 74% of HR professionals. "It is clear that companies must not only make diversity a priority in their workplace, they must also communicate the effectiveness of their diversity programs to the workforce," says SHRM President and CEO Michael R. Losey. Both groups tend to agree that qualifications should be the most important selection criteria for hiring. However, more job seekers (51%) -- compared with only 23% of HR professionals -- agreed that diversity efforts frequently overshadowed candidate qualifications.