Adopting a best practice Diversity strategy requires the application of useable benchmarks and targets to ensure that D&I performance can be appropriately measured.
1. Establish your D&I baseline The starting point to measuring diversity success in your organisation is to establish a diversity "baseline” which accurately reflects your current D&I status. This is achieved by gathering real demographic information within the various functions in your organisation, by seeking employees' views through focus groups and surveys, and benchmarking diversity performance against peers, national averages and comparable companies.
2. Set achievable targets The following resources may be valuable to help establish useable benchmarks to measure diversity performance in each protected characteristic. It is important to use the information from these resources in the context of the diversity ‘baseline’ to ensure D&I targets are achievable:
• Government guidelines & charters
• Recommendations from the not-for-for profit sector
• Professionally prepared third party research & whitepapers
• Guidance from professional bodies
• Guidance from member organisations and forums
• Industry averages based on annual returns from publicly traded companies
An honest look at the business is important at this stage as barriers to meeting targets ‘on the ground’ (such as management limitations, attitude, values, policies, regional mindsets, commercial and capacity pressures etc) can fundamentally disrupt even the most effective Inclusivity strategy.
3. Manage, measure and monitor D&I performance Strategic diversity goals are important and underpin the overall direction of the business and senior leaders should naturally act as role models, however, it is also important to create accountability for diversity at an operational management level. As with all objectives, ensuring that targets are SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timely) means that management can be accountable, and diversity can be sensibly weaved into the day to day performance targets of the business.
To read more about how to improve Diversity and Inclusivity in your organisation download this report.