Talent

The ROI of Diversity Initiatives: The Challenges of Metrics

 By Dr. Edward E. Hubbard

There’s a fair amount of buzz around diversity measurement and analytics. Advances in software, newly-available data sources, and how-to manuals have made it easier gain access to diversity measures. Although interest in measuring the effects of diversity has been growing, the topic still challenges even the most sophisticated and progressive diversity departments.

Many diversity professionals and practitioners know they must begin to show how diversity is linked to the bottom-line or they will have difficulty maintaining funding, gaining support, and assessing progress.

The data-to-wisdom continuum

Over the past several years, diversity journals abound with volumes of information about the impact of a diverse workforce, primarily from a talent representation point of view focusing on organizational make up covering race, rank, and gender (counting heads). Many of these diversity professionals are working with inconsistent, basic information and have yet to move from being reactive to proactive and predictive.

In short, they have made little progress along the data-to-information-to-wisdom continuum needed to provide sophisticated diverse workforce insights that are critical to strategic decision making.

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