HR Management & Compliance

Do You Train on Diversity as a Competitive Advantage?

Ernst & Young, LLP, which ranked among the top 10 companies on DiversityInc’s “2014 Top 50 Companies for Diversity” list and the 2014 National Association for Female Executives (NAFE) “Top Companies for Executive Women,” has demonstrated a sustained commitment to diversity and inclusiveness. The firm, which was ranked third on the DiversityInc Top 50 list and fifth by DiversityInc for mentoring, has implemented numerous training and development programs supporting that commitment.

“We’ve long known that diversity and inclusiveness create a competitive edge,” said Karyn Twaronite, EY Americas inclusiveness officer and an Ernst & Young (EY) partner. “EY’s research consistently shows that when our people feel valued for their unique talents and insights, together we create the highest performing teams that deliver exceptional quality and client service. Differences present opportunities. Inclusiveness drives results.”

“Diversity and inclusiveness are cultural—and commercial—imperatives that help differentiate EY in today’s global marketplace,” said Stephen R. Howe Jr EY Americas managing partner. “… Our clients come to us with incredibly complex challenges. We address them by bringing together our teams’ many different skills and perspectives to transform individual talents into collectively powerful solutions.”


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Early this year, the firm also was named to FORTUNE magazine’s “100 Best Companies to Work For” list. “We are committed to creating an environment that delivers exceptional experiences that bring our people lasting career value—experiences that support their ability to serve our clients and the communities in which we live and work,” Nancy Altobello, EY Americas vice chair, Talent, said in reference to this award. “The exceptional EY experience means a strong foundation: learning, coaching, and meaningful career conversations, as well as transformative professional experiences that help them grow, develop, and lead, in business and in life.”

EY was recognized for a variety of development programs, including EYU, the firm’s comprehensive, global career development framework that delivers personalized learning, coaching, and experiences to help all employees progress in their careers. In the firm’s new Career and Family Transitions coaching program, internal executive coaches run individual and group sessions for employees who are welcoming a new baby through birth or adoption. The firm also offers training to EY professionals who serve as participants’ counselors.

EY’s Global Student Experience internship program offers overseas assignments for high-performing summer interns. Selected U.S. students and non-U.S. students coming into the country participate in this program, which involves a U.S.-based internship, followed by 4 weeks abroad at another EY member firm location, and then completion of the program in the United States. Last year, the program had nearly 60 participants and 12 host countries.

In addition to a Professional Women’s Network, which fosters the exchange of knowledge and experiences and provides significant exposure and leadership opportunities to women at all levels, the firm offers many development opportunities for women. For example, its Inclusive Leadership Program is a 3-year development program geared toward high-potential women partners/principals focused on that next level of leadership.

Participants are mentored by a firm leader and an external coach and receive a customized development plan. The firm’s Career Mentors and Sponsors Program also provides opportunities for high-performing women to advance within the organization by providing them with “equitable access to mentoring, sponsorship, and game-changing career assignments and experiences.”


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In tomorrow’s Advisor, we’ll give you a handy training handout on diversity, and we’ll showcase a fast-paced and effective way to train on key HR topics in 10 minutes flat.