Employers are becoming aware that it’s increasingly important to make strides with regard to their Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (DEIB) efforts. Choosing the right technology provider is key. According to a recent study from Redthread Research, companies that are “serious about implementing systemic change and seeking to achieve a lasting impact should look to DEIB tech for capabilities that enable them.”
Redthread states that DEIB technology should affect an employer’s people-related decisions in a way that helps them meet their DEIB goals, and that it must help drive systemic change in the organization. Such technology includes “enterprise software that provides insights, or alters processes or practices … in support of an organization’s efforts to become more diverse, equitable, and inclusive, and to enable belonging.”
Companies can use DEIB tech to:
Uncover existing policies, practices, and programs that may be biased, discriminatory (in reality, if not in design), or in conflict with the company strategy, and which need to be changed
Identify existing gaps between goals and the actions taken to meet them
Measure and track progress toward those goals
Analyze data and information for greater insights, and identify areas of interest
Make recommendations on next steps
Scale these efforts and the impact of these activities for the benefit of the entire organization
Redthread cites two reasons why now is the time for employers to look for DEIB tech solutions. First, trust in large companies is low: “A September 2020 Edelman study found that 43% of Americans trust large corporations to do the right thing in responding to issues of systemic racism and racial justice, as compared with 62% trusting small businesses. Corporations, in general, are believed to care less for their employees and share too little of their success with them. In addition, several recent instances of employers monitoring or tracking employee activity without their knowledge have appeared in the media. Employee fears of privacy invasion became more serious once the majority of the workforce shifted to remote work during the pandemic.”
Second, expectations are high for large companies “to do the right thing and take meaningful actions on DEIB. Seventy-seven percent of Americans state that it’s deeply important for companies to respond to racial injustice to earn or keep their trust. And while words matter, actions that lead to change matter even more. This was made clear when several leaders of large corporations received criticisms and backlash from consumers and media for their public stances in support of the #BLM movement: People saw them as stating empty words and pointed out the leaders’ failures to address discrimination within their own companies.”
Choosing the correct technology vendor is, of course, crucial to the success of an organization’s DEIB efforts, whatever the organization’s size. Redthread suggests employers consider “the amount of support your organization might need from the vendor. One way to gauge if the vendor can meet your needs is by looking at … whether it has the in-house expertise needed.”
Redthread notes that companies may also require additional expertise or services beyond tech, such as consulting services, or access to resources or communities. Organizations just starting on their DEIB journeys are encouraged to leverage a knowledgeable vendor to better understand the complexities of the issues around DEIB.
What industries are embracing DEIB technology? Redthread points out that companies in the financial services, banking, insurance, and yes, technology spaces are leading the way, with employers in the healthcare, pharmaceuticals, life science, and chemical industries are increasingly interested in adopting DEIB solutions.
Employers that have the metrics to back up their DEIB efforts will fare better under the ever more watchful eyes of governments, investors, and litigators. One such metric is pay equity, which is strongly interconnected with issues surrounding DEIB.
Companies would do well to leverage an external technology partner to monitor pay equity on a monthly basis. To learn more about achieving pay equity, click here; to find out more about how organizations can bolster their DEIB with the help of an expert technology partner, click here.
If your organization needs assistance achieving its DEI goals, check out our professional consulting services and DEI software, PayParity.