Approaching Your D&I Assessment The Right Way

The keys to understanding what’s most critical about developing your D&I Assessment are first understanding your own needs.

The Role of a D&I Assessment

A D&I assessment is a crucial part of a D&I strategy, which should consider multiple aspects and angles of the inclusive workplace. This might include marketplace analysis, examining the supply chain, surveying employees and leadership, or studying how community demographics interact and impact performance or business. Where many organizations struggle is when they take a decidedly tactical approach to a D&I assessment, jumping straight into which surveys, focus groups, or practice reviews are most essential, when the answer might be all of those things. Or none of those things! Or those things and much more. Avoid “checking the boxes” when it comes to undertaking your D&I assessment – work backwards from your vision or idea of success to determine what assessments will be most valuable for you.

DEI Campus Climate Studies

For example, more and more colleges and universities today are investing in understanding the climate of diversity, equity and inclusion on campus. Typically, places of higher education study enrollment and attrition rates as part of this analysis, sometimes exclusively. While important and interesting, these paint an incomplete picture in assessing what’s really going on. If left as the only two points of analysis from which action is taken, it can actually be harder and take longer to achieve organizational change because the roadmap is missing important landmarks for the D&I journey. Gathering key stakeholder perceptions and experiences through primary research, for example, can be critical to understanding the complexities and nuances involved in assessing campus climate and planning the most efficient and effective way forward.

Connecting Assessment to Achievement

At The Kaleidoscope Group, we connect a D&I assessment to your Vision of Success – the roadmap we develop with clients to help them understand their current and desired D&I journey, how it connects to business impact, and ultimately the strategic framework necessary for achieving success. Determining these strategic priorities lets us build assessments that are most useful to this process.

When considering a D&I Assessment, remember:

  • Start with the end. The right assessment and tools for analysis should be informed by your business priorities and strategic imperatives.
  • Think strategically, not tactically. Focus groups, surveys, HR reports, etc. can be valuable, but they should be engaged intentionally and purposefully. Don’t confuse an activity like a survey with conducting a comprehensive D&I assessment.
  • Context is key. Understanding what’s driving certain behaviors in your organization goes beyond knowing the statistical demographics of your workforce. Community, socio-political realities, marketplace dynamics and trends all inform inclusion at an organization.

Ask The Right Questions!

The right D&I Assessment asks the right questions, in search of the right answers, for the right reasons; to achieve a vision for inclusion and diversity in an organization. Starting your journey with the right insights is key to that achievement.