- While nearly two-thirds of employers (65%) surveyed said diversity, equity and inclusion matters, nearly just as many (63%) said their organization allocated “little to no resources” to DEI, according to research released Oct. 25 by the Society for Human Resource Management and the Boston College School of Social Work.
- Notably, one-fifth of the HR pros surveyed said their organization’s policies were “not at all fair” or “only somewhat fair.”
- The research measured “mean equity scores” for various aspects of the employment life cycle. Systems with the highest mean equity scores included recruiting and hiring; compensation and benefits; and orientation and onboarding. The lowest mean equity scores were held by employee resources and supports; job structures; and supervision and mentoring.
A recession may be looming, but DEI programs should not be on the chopping block, one expert told HR Dive. In fact, during times of massive change, DEI may be even more important to ensure workers are treated fairly and thoughtfully.
But to succeed, DEI needs to be treated as a business function, not just HR programming, according to a 2021 report by Josh Bersin analysts. The high-performing companies in the report’s analysis defined business through DEI and lived by that as a culture initiative, not just metrics to hit, the report noted. DEI programs that work in isolation from the rest of the business may be resigned to failure, it continued.
Companies have been dedicating more resources to DEI, however, including hiring leaders specifically for those initiatives — though employers are somewhat split on whether those leaders have the right resources to do their jobs, according to a Salary.com survey released in August.
For DEI to truly succeed, executives must buy in, a Heidrick & Struggles report from earlier this month noted. That includes role modeling the creation of a psychologically safe environment and regularly stating the strategic importance of DEI to the company as well as the company’s progress toward those goals. It may need to be seen as a core aspect of leader performance, the report said — something that historically wasn’t the case.