Organizations in the top quartile for racial and ethnic diversity are 36% more likely to have financial returns above their respective industry median. This is a great indicator for why companies must take their DEI efforts to the next level.
Organizations need to identify and support visible (race, gender) and invisible diversity (neurodiversity, sexual orientation) in the workplace. Equity needs to take into account the challenges that have arisen due to the pandemic such as women picking up more household work in addition to their workplace responsibilities. Inclusion has to encompass creating a safe space for honest communication where differences are celebrated.
Technology, specifically DEI-centric products, can elevate efforts by adding a layer of intelligence through analytics and enabling smooth two-way communication. Other advantages are listed below.
DEI management tools provide a real-time view of diversity in the workplace. They also provide intersectionality of data which helps identify new clusters of commonality. These can serve as input for establishing new ERGs specific to your workforce.
Features such as custom dashboards and data visualizations allow members across teams and different levels access information and also get visibility of all ongoing programs and initiatives. They also help track metrics which tie into overall DEI goals.
The survey feature lets DEI teams collect sensitive data with employee consent which can help them tailor new programs and create support groups to aid employees. Invisible diversity can be gauged by using the right communication channels and underrepresented employees can be reached for their input and feedback on workplace culture.
Products that provide features such as customizable roles and permissions help drive accountability and ownership. DEI initiatives can be treated just like other business-centric initiatives complete with steps for ideation, planning, execution and result tracking.
ERG management softwares provide end-to-end solutions that take care of all aspects of ERGs such as viewing membership numbers, planning events, managing budgets and tracking expenses. With access to all ERGs and their local and global chapters, DEI leaders can also realign their strategy based on real-time information with the help of technology.
The time and effort saved by DEI team members and ERG managers who use software solutions over manual excel sheets and multiple email threads is incomparable. Resources are freed from repetitive admin tasks and can instead focus on creating meaningful engagement that impacts business.
The insights generated by DEI tools can be used to recalibrate the recruitment process. Unconscious bias in the shortlisting and interviewing process will become evident if new joiner data is similar to overall employee data. In such a scenario, diversity numbers will not move unless the recruitment process is revamped. Prospective employees also tend to choose employers who are committed to their DEI goals and can display tangible results. Tech solutions are long-term investments that help build this trust.
Employee development programs when backed by the right technology can unleash the true potential of employees. Mentor-mentee algorithms that use multiple data points including diversity data find the perfect match so that employees get the most out of their mentorship programs. Visible career progression roadmaps and personalized development strategies have a positive impact on employee satisfaction and retention.
Has your organization maximized the potential of its DEI initiatives by using the right products and technology?
 Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Primer for 2021 (Gartner)