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Resources for Employers

How to Create a Diversity Scorecard for Your Organization

With Sample Scorecard!

Diversity. It's a big buzzword, and most companies want to make sure that they "have it." And that's often the end of the story.


We all know that the concept of diversity can be fraught and daunting and ultimately seem so difficult to break down that companies don't know how to pursue their own goal. Beyond knowing that diversity is something that almost everyone wants to say that their organization has, how do you get there? What are the best ways to measure the diversity and progress within your business?

We sat down with PowerToFly's own D&I Executive, Dionna Smith, to discuss this very topic. She shared her insights on how any organization can create a meaningful "Diversity Scorecard" that's easy to use.

Here's what we learned.

Before you can create a diversity scorecard that fits your company's needs, you first need to understand who's underrepresented at your organization. Generally, people think of diverse candidates as traditionally underemployed populations—women, veterans, ethnic minorities, LGTBQ, etc.—but it is also important to remember that a diverse hire is someone who does not fit the typical demographic of your team. For example, here at PowerToFly we are mostly women so for us diversifying our company has meant adding more men to our team, a demographic whose perspective we were missing out on.

The next step in creating a diversity scorecard for your company is understanding why you seek to create inclusion and diversity within your organization. If you don't know your goals, it's going to be impossible to measure their success. Let's break it down by the four most common diversity drivers: Compliance, Conscience, Business, and Talent.

"It's the Law"

About 10 percent of companies seek to diversify simply to comply with the law. If this is the motivating factor for your organization then it is important to have a scorecard that keeps track of metrics such as:

  1. The number of employee complaints and resolution rates. That is to say, do your diverse hires feel comfortable in the office environment?
  2. Training attendance rates. If the main motivation is a legal one, then people need to be trained and familiar with the exact laws you are hoping to comply with.
  3. The number of AAPs (affirmative action programs) and their respective goals. Keep in mind that every state is going to have different laws and so the requirements for AAPs are going to look different depending on where you are located.

"It's the Right Thing to Do"

About 15 percent of companies report that they diversify because they feel it aligns with their morals. Key metrics for a diversity scorecard for this type of organization include:

  1. Representation within leadership. Oftentimes statistically diverse organizations are still very much homogenous at the top.
  2. Your organization's reputation in the community and with its customers.
  3. Similarly, shareholders' or investors' attitudes about the organization.

"It's a Business Imperative"

Another 58 percent of companies prioritize diversity because it is a business imperative. That is to say, they feel it makes them more profitable. If this is your main driver, then your diversity scorecard should include the following:

  1. Do the demographics of your organization reflect the demographics of your community and customers?
  2. How are you branding your organization's culture? Are you making your diversity efforts a part of your brand?
  3. Measuring the strength of relationships with global partners and customers. Do you understand your customer base on an international level and how many employees reflect that customer base or at least speak that foreign language?

"It's About Talent"

The last category represents the 12 percent of companies who report that they prioritize diversity because they have realized it allows them access to larger talent pools. A diversity scorecard for this type of company would ideally take into account the following:

  1. Representation numbers, including the number of people hired and the number of people leaving.
  2. Career path and movement metrics. How are people moving up in your company? And who is being assigned the types of special projects that generally allow for promotions?
  3. Do you have high potential representation? Are you looking at the diverse talent you may already have at the mid-level and guiding them into positions where their talents can be seen?

This isn't one size fits all—creating the scorecard that works best for you will most likely mean pulling criteria from several of the categories listed above. But no matter what your organization's motivations are, it is important to make sure that your numbers always come from self-reporting. Asking employees or potential hires to self-identify both guarantees accurate data and eliminates the all-to-common pitfall of being misidentified by human resources.

After you have chosen what you would like to keep track of, we recommend creating a scorecard that's simple and easy to read. It can be as basic as organizing a chart and listing each metric in a row and creating columns that show where you are now (a benchmark), your goals, and space to update your data quarterly. You can reference our sample diversity scorecard here, which you can download and edit as you see fit!

For further excellent insights, you can access the chat and learn with Dionna Smith about diversity scorecards here.

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