At the start of the year, employers across the country declared diversity and inclusion (D&I) a priority for 2018. It was such a popular goal that LinkedIn’s 2018 Global Recruiting Trends report named diversity as “the biggest game-changer and most embraced trend” in hiring.
Of course, improving D&I has been a key objective of savvy businesses since well before January. Beyond the moral and ethical considerations, research supporting the benefits of hiring for and welcoming a variety of perspectives has been rolling in for years. A 2015 McKinsey report, for example, stated:
“Our latest research finds that companies in the top quartile for gender or racial and ethnic diversity are more likely to have financial returns above their national industry medians.”
We’ve finally reached a threshold of awareness though, it seems, and now nearly everyone has launched their own D&I initiative.
So how are things going? Are we making real progress? We conducted a mid-year news check-in to find out (or to at least get a sense of where things stand). Below, we’ve outlined the main themes that emerged in our analysis of D&I-related news coverage from the first half of the year (January 1, 2018 to June 30, 2018). We’ve also included the individual stories around the year’s biggest D&I developments thus far. On the whole, it seems like positive things are happening — but we’ve got a long way to go.
Glancing through this list will give you the 30,000-foot view of things, but we encourage you to dig into a few of these pieces. Perhaps they’ll provide some pointers for your own D&I efforts …
Hiring is Hot for D&I Leadership Roles
To head up the many newly launched initiatives, companies are creating leadership roles specifically focused on D&I. Hiring announcements for these positions — often involving top talent — dominated the coverage we analyzed.
- Michelle Obama’s former chief of staff to head up Grammy task force on diversity and inclusion
- Uber Hires a Much-Needed Diversity and Inclusion Officer
- NH Diversity and Inclusion Council members announced
- Freddie Mac names Jacqueline Welch to lead HR, diversity and inclusion
- KeyCorp names Kim Manigault as head of diversity and inclusion
- Renita Miller named Graduate School associate dean for access, diversity and inclusion
Broader Initiatives and New Tools are Popping Up
Beyond D&I programming within companies, broader industry groups are launching job fairs, training “tours,” and more. We’re also seeing new tech innovations built expressly for D&I.
- What you need to know about Burwell’s new diversity and inclusion plan
- Gov. Rauner drinks chocolate milk to demonstrate his commitment to diversity
- CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion™ Launches Nationwide Unconscious Bias Tour to Engage 12 Million Employees and Students
- SHRM to Host Diversity Job Fair at Its Annual Conference & Exposition in Chicago
- The Leaky Tech Pipeline explains how to address diversity and inclusion
Results are Rolling in on Recent D&I Efforts
Several articles, through both media reports and company self-assessments, looked at the progress thus far of newly hatched D&I initiatives. Some accounts were encouraging. Some were indicative of how much work there is left to do.
- NH Diversity and Inclusion Council releases preliminary report
- Uber CEO on diversity report: We need to improve ‘across the board’
- Google’s Diversity Efforts, Charted
- The Organizational Responsibility To Diversity And Inclusion
- HP Inc. Unveils First Results Of Its Ad-Industry-Stirring Diversity And Inclusion Initiatives
People Are Speaking Up and Speaking Out
Many pieces illustrated that employees (or in some cases, students) are feeling evermore empowered to push for action on D&I — and sometimes even to air the dirty laundry of unjust institutions.
- raceAhead: Google Employees Demand Action On Diversity
- Chicago students demand ‘diversity and inclusion’ grad requirement
- Google Fired and Disciplined Employees for Speaking Out About Diversity [Updated]
- Nike’s VP of Diversity out amid investigation into workplace culture issues
We’re Hearing More About D&I Awards and Recognition
It’s pretty powerful to consider that D&I has become such an important topic that getting awards for it is its own news trend! From receiving formal recognition to landing on best-of lists, doing D&I well is clearly something the industry is enthusiastically celebrating.
- Bayer Earns National Recognition as Diversity and Inclusion Leader in America’s 2018 “Best-of-the-Best” Corporations
- America’s 10 Best Employers For Diversity [Infographic]
- Diversity and Inclusion, Community Service and Leadership in Restaurants and Foodservice Recognized at National Awards Gala
Will 2018 be a banner year for D&I? It appears that things are at least heading in the right direction. It’ll be interesting to see if the momentum is sustained — we look forward to doing an end-of-year analysis!
Jori Saeger Jori runs the blog at Koru. She finds and shares the most valuable and educational content for innovative talent acquisition leaders who want to change the future of hiring.More from Jori Saeger