Dec 21 2021 | admin
In today’s world making your workplace inclusive for diverse employees is no longer an option or a choice. For every organization to succeed, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion policy is necessary. Diverse groups of employees bring diverse ideas to the table. That enables the organisation to have more options for problem-solving. Moreover, an inclusive environment helps employees stay engaged and an engaged employee is the biggest asset of any organisation.
Organizations at the start of their inclusive workplace journey often question what after implementation of the policy? How to evaluate the inclusion policy progress? What are the metrics for evaluating the success of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion policies?
These questions are not only from organisations who are starting their journey of the inclusive workplace but also from organisations who have already implemented it but find it difficult to measure their performance. The success and failure of a DE&I policy can be measured from various aspects like the percentage of employees from the diverse group in the workplace to the level of engagement. Organisations intending to measure their performance of DE&I policy implementation can review using multiple metrics internally or hire an DE&I consulting and advisory firm . Advisories like The Outcaste Collective working in the field of diversity, Equity and inclusion consultancy help organisations in both implement of the DE&I policy and also track the metrics and measure their progress.
Here are the top 10 pointers on how to measure the progress of success of an inclusive workplace.
- Why You Need It – The first and basic question when starting the journey of an inclusive workplace should be why do you need it? The organisation starting the journey or moving forward should always keep in mind why they need the implementation of an inclusive workplace. This is the soul of every success measurement metric. Without knowing the purpose and without keeping it aligned throughout the process will make the measurement of workplace inclusion fruitless. The “why” is the guiding light throughout the journey.
- The Definition – When you are clear about the WHY, the next step is to define the definition of Inclusion of Diversity, what does it mean to the organisation. The degree of inclusion may vary depending on the business strategy, outcomes and maturity of the HR practices. Inclusion of various lesser represented groups like CisHet Women, LGBTQIA+, PWD, Neurodivergents, employees and employees from different race and ethnicities, depends on the maturity level of the organisation. The definition and degree of inclusion for the organisation is the framework, on which the entire process will be based. Hence, it is of utmost importance that organisations begin their DE&I journey by unambiguously defining their inclusion charter or statement. The inclusion charter or statement acts as a framework upon which the organisation can build the entire inclusive workplace structure. The framework will further help in measuring the success of the inclusion drive.
- Data is ciritical – In measuring the success of any policy, data collection becomes crucial. The second important aspect is to determine and finalise what specific data the organisation needs and from whom. The targeted sample size and demography has to be meticulously set before starting the process. The previous two points will guide as these data will be for the “Why” and within the “definition”. Storage of data is yet another crucial point to consider, since data collection means private and personal data points such as gender identity, sexual orientation, disability status, partners name and many such sensitive employee data shall be collected. This sensitive information cannot be disclosed and must be protected with utmost confidentiality.
- The Purpose – After determining how and what data should be collected, the organisation should also ascertain the utility. The primary function of data analysis is to diagnose the gap and identify the improvement measures. Organisation can also ponder upon a few other questions such as, what else do you want from the data? Is the organisation only tracking the success or searching opportunities for inclusion of further diverse groups? These questions have to be answered before the collection of data to avoid data redundancy. Ofcourse, these questions may vary according to the social-economic location of the organisation.
- The baseline metrics – To determine and analyse any progress one needs a baseline for comparison. The baseline should be the data from the previous year or for any new organisation some HR or business metric that they want to change by implementing the inclusion drive at the workplace. Hence, it is very important to set some standard of comparison of data keeping in mind the definition and degree of inclusion of the organisation.
- Goals are meant to be achieved – The next step shall be to set goals of inclusion. For example, a certain number or percentage of employees from the LGBTQIA+ community to be included or a certain percentage of PWD employees to be included in the organisation within a determined period. The goals should not be only limited to hiring and increasing the numbers of diverse employees in the organisation, but also track retention, promotion and engagement of diverse employees. Another key determinant of workplace inclusion progress is the number of diverse employees who have felt safe to come out to the organisation, be it employees from the LGBTQIA+ community or neurodivergent employees. Since these two groups always feel vulnerable in coming out fearing loss of job. Infact, the coming out stories in an inclusive organization is an important indicator even more than the hiring to determine whether the policy is working or not.
- Where are we Heading – Now, you have the framework, the data, the goal, the definition, the next logical step is to track your progress. It should be a continuous process and not a year-end review. Tracking your goals and progress will help in timely intervention if things are not moving as per desire. From hiring to appraisal every metric needs to be monitored to ascertain inclusion and engagement of the diverse employees, since the fact remains you can only retain an engaged employee.
- Whose Responsibility – Most employees are driven towards tangible targets like sales and profits etc, while implementation of the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion policy is left on a handful of employees. Just a group or a couple of people cannot make an Inclusive workplace, moreover, in large organisations, it is improbable to track progress of each metric. Consider assigning responsibility to group leaders, line managers, team leaders and track the development through them. DE&I interventions cannot be implemented in silos. The mission of workplace inclusion shall flow from the top but the line managers are the ones who implement it on the ground, and hence it is critical to involve and engage the middle management for the success of the intervention.
- Review, Achieved, Set Again – Review the data collected and the existing policy, compare it with the baseline keeping in mind the mission and definition of inclusive workplace according to the organisation. Use interventions to correct and align the wrongs. Once you have achieved the goal, it is time to set a new goal to keep with momentum.
- Explore – Determination of success and evaluation of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion is a continuous process. The spectrum of inclusion expands every day and organisation has to evolve accordingly. Moreover, no one shoe fits all. There are many other ways to track, review and analyse the progress and success of the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion policy at the workplace. Organisations can explore all other metrics and procedures to evaluate their workplace based on the socio-economic environment.
The Outcast Collective (TOC) is an Diversity, Equity and Inclusion consulting and advisory firm.We enable Affirmative Action and Equal Employment objectives at workplaces for individuals with intersecting and overlapping social identities. Reach us at +91 98215101581 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. To know more about us visit our website www.theoutcastcollective.com.