Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Corporate Services
Corporations looking to implement Diversity & Inclusion plans can face a daunting task. SHRM & other organizations Outline processes for implementing a plan, and we are here to help guide you through your implementation and beyond. Our Corporate retainer services provide you with a partner that can ensure that your plans are appropriately implemented and audited. We also audit hiring policies (including referral programs), job description language, and more. Allow our experience to help you make a difference on your corporate culture. Use the contact form to reach out to us today to see how we can support your initiatives.
Employers use diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) initiatives for both compliance obligations and to increase the overall bottom line with a more diverse, equitable and inclusive workforce. Developing a DE&I initiative involves four main phases:
1. Data collection and analysis to determine the need for change.
2. Strategy design to match business objectives.
3. Implementation of the initiative.
4. Evaluation and continuing audit of the plan.
The following nine steps break down these main phases into action steps employers can take to develop a DE&I initiative.
Step 1: Compile Data
Employers must first know what their workforce looks like compared with the labor market, and if there are inequities based on demographics. By capturing data on employee demographics, an employer is better able to understand the diversity of its employees and equity of its internal practices and identify any areas of concern or trends. Historically, these data have included federal and state protected categories; however, recent trends indicate that other factors, such as personality type and thinking/learning style, may also be of value, though perhaps harder to find national comparative data for. If so, an employer may have to track its own data on these categories over time and determine what need for change may exist. Demographic data may include the following:
- Ethnicity/national origin.
- Family status.
- Gender identity or expression.
- Life experiences.
- Organization function and level.
- Personality type.
- Physical characteristics.
- Religion, belief and spirituality.
- Sexual orientation.
- Thinking/learning styles.
- Veteran status.
Multiple resources are available to capture these data. Some employers may already have much of this information available in their HRIS system from affirmative action plans and EEO reporting obligations. However, most employers will need to survey their workforce through voluntary self-identification to obtain additional data such as religion and sexual orientation. It may be challenging to gather diversity data from employees initially, especially when employees are unsure of how the data will be used or if there is general distrust of leadership in an organization. If this is the case, an employer may want to use a third party or survey technology to capture information that will be reported in aggregate without identifying information.
In addition, it would be useful to gather information about the current company culture regarding DE&I. Again, surveying employees can help shed light on their perception of the company in relation to encouraging and appreciating DE&I in the workplace. See Diversity Survey.
Nontraditional differences such as personality traits or life experiences can also be measured. Employers can conduct personality testing of the workforce or include open-ended questions on employee surveys to collect information regarding life experiences or other information employees may want to share about themselves.
Step 2: Identify Needs and/or Areas of Concern
Step 3: Address Policies or Practices Affecting DE&I
Step 4: Identify Business Objectives
Step 5: Procure Buy-in and Support
Step 6: Implement Initiatives
Step 7: Communicate the Initiatives
Step 8: Measure and Disseminate Outcomes
Step 9: Review and Adjust
DE&I initiatives are not static, and an ongoing review of the workforce and a response to changing needs are necessary. The employer must establish procedures for periodic review of DE&I initiatives and goals. After a DE&I initiative has been implemented for a period of time, the employer should resurvey employees regarding their perceptions of the company’s efforts. Periodically, an organization may need to start at step 1 again and collect data to refocus its DE&I program.