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How to measure the success of your Inclusion & Diversity strategy

Doing business in today’s world is tough.

Competition is intensifying with unknown disrupters around every corner; consumers demand more as they surf the global marketplace; employees are expectant of a dynamic workplace with endless opportunity; business processes require almost constant reinvention; regulatory oversight has intensified, and the war on talent continues.

Over the last two decades or so, a new business strategy has emerged which offers companies a clear solution to many of their key challenges.

Inclusion & Diversity have shifted from being two HR buzzwords to a key component of the business strategy for many of the world’s best and most innovative companies. A myriad of initiatives has now been developed to enhance and deliver this strategy and organisations are seeking ‘how to’ guides – see my simple 8 tips strategy

Whilst this is great, far less attention is being paid to reviewing the success of such strategies and this is leading to Inclusion & Diversity fatigue and a level of cynicism as to its efficacy.

What use is it in investing time, energy and resources into something that cannot or is not assessed for success?

It is vital to determine measurable key success factors (KSFs) and ensure that these attributes are not simply rigid quantitative targets but also include layers of qualitative results.

In my past experience of managing global Inclusion & Diversity programmes and nowadays advising my clients, I have come across a plethora of target dashboards and management reports on the topic.

The following ten areas are worthy of consideration and, when assessed in detail and over time, these indicators will provide clear and demonstrable evidence as to the impact and transformative success that a well-constructed Inclusion & Diversity strategy can have.

The below categories are best assessed by gender and by minority groupings (ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation, age and so on – subject to restriction around data capture in these areas):

1. Representation across a series of levels such as board, committee, seniority, promotions attained, international mobility

2. Recruitment analysis by applicants, interviewed candidates and job offers made; review diversity of recruitment panels

3. Remuneration, highlighting the gender pay gap

4. Financial savings attributable to workplace agility initiatives, enhanced talent retention

and brand value increase

5. Employee turnover rates and career break returners (following parental, care, illness, sabbatical or other leave)

6. Employee ownership and/or usage of company products & services

7. Employee Resource Groups membership numbers and activities (examples include groups supporting women, LGBT, disabled persons, multi-generations, ethnic groups, religious affiliations and so on)

8 Training – access to and completion of a variety of programs such as Unconscious Bias and awareness sessions on minority groupings issues, cross-cultural and inclusive leadership techniques

9. Policies & procedures that are gender or minority grouping supportive (such as parental supports, workplace agility including flexible hours & work location, sponsorship and codes of conduct)

10. Voice - of Employees (via staff surveys), of Customers (through net promoter scores), of Suppliers (utilising supplier diversity policies)

Taking all of the above on board, the transformative impact of Inclusion & Diversity within the workplace will become clear, trends can be analysed and resources aligned appropriately to deliver sustained organisational success.

Would a complimentary Lunch & Learn on Diversity related theme be a valuable investment of 45-minutes? We run 2 free Lunch & Learns each month. If you would like to book one for your organisation, email or go here to fill out the inquiry form.

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