Diversity and Inclusion – how do you measure up?

Diversity and inclusion are more than issues for compliance or nice corporate values to hold. They are essential to business. When done right, emphasis on diversity and inclusion can positively impact business outcomes. However, it’s not just about attracting a diverse group of applicants and new hires – this is important for sure, but a focus on diversity and inclusion needs to span the entire employee life cycle and be part of the fabric of company culture overall. A focus on diversity and inclusion can positively impact attracting and hiring, quality of hire, productivity, innovation, employee engagement, brand identity, and more.

Diversity and Inclusion Analytics: The Basics

At the most basic level Diversity and Inclusion metrics provide a baseline understanding of how the organization is performing. These measures also tell you how you are doing in terms of compliance with regulations. It’s important to look across the entire employee lifecyle.

Are we attracting and hiring diverse talent?

  • applicants by diversity group
  • new hires by diversity group across all levels
  • recruitment source by diversity group
  • compensation by diversity group

Are we developing and providing opportunities to advance for our diverse talent?

  • HiPos across diversity lines
  • learning/training/opportunities
  • % of diverse employees being promoted per year vs all groups

Are we retaining our diverse talent?

  • diverse talent turnover by tenure, learning, manager, department, role, etc.
  • compare retention rates vs industry average

Are we prepared for the future with diverse talent? (Succession Planning)

  • % of ready-now diverse workers in pipelines for critical roles
  • % of future-ready diverse workers in pipeline for critical roles

Diversity and Inclusion: Beyond the Basics

To make any true strides in areas of Diversity and Inclusion it’s important to complement the metrics and the analytics with deeper understanding of the experiences and context for our diverse talent.

  • Are we treating our diverse talent well, do they want to stay, would they recommend us?
    • Engagement survey
    • Pulse checks 
    • Productivity measures 
    • Employee referrals
  • Can we find out more about the experiences of our diverse talent with qualitative exploration?
    • when the sample size is too small for analytics, qualitative can bring visibility and understanding to experiences of diverse groups
    • as Maxine Williams of Facebook notes, you can’t just say “if there was more of you, we could tell you why there was so few of you”,  you need to find alternative ways of understanding 
    • interviews, focus groups, ethnography can be used to gain authentic understanding of what life is like for diverse groups 
  • Identify and address unconscious biases in processes (gender, age, ethnicity, etc.) 
    • don’t be afraid to explore and identify biases within the organization – we all have them and awareness is key to change 
    • be open to exploring organizational, process and individual biases (what are our beliefs, unconscious or conscious, that may be impacting our behaviors, choices, decisions)
    • assess language, tone, messages in job descriptions, application process, interviews, performance reviews, feedback
    • note: gender neutral job postings fill 2x faster and increase the number of applicants across all gender groups (Kieran Snyder of Textio)


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