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New Data Points to Just How Important DEI is to Employees

Would your employees quit over DEI policies? It may be more likely than you realize. In fact, although you’re likely aware that employees, especially those in younger demographics, value diversity, you may not realize the extent to which they value diversity, equity, and inclusion.

DEI a Renewed Focus Across the Country

Companies have, of course, been focusing on issues related to diversity and inclusion—and, most recently, equity—for decades. Some might question the serious commitment certain companies may have had, though. And, in truth, much of the historical activity around DEI has been driven more by mandate than mission.

That has changed significantly over the past few years. For example, a recent report indicates that all Fortune 100 companies have made public commitments to DEI. All of them!

Still, despite this widespread buy-in at the corporate level, there is still a lingering perception in some circles that employees themselves don’t really care that much about DEI efforts in the workplace. Some have the idea that employees may roll their eyes at, or ignore, the top-down policies and commitments their employers institute.

Data, however, suggest that this sentiment is far from accurate.

Employees Care About DEI—a Lot

A report by JustCapital found that 92% of Americans say it is important for companies to commit to DEI efforts; and 68% said companies have more work to do in pursuing those goals. But employee interest in DEI isn’t just idealistic. A majority of workers say they are willing to put their paychecks on the line for DEI.

A new survey from GoodHire found 81% of workers would leave their jobs if their employers lacked a commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace; and 54% said they would take a pay cut to improve workplace DEI.

These numbers should be eye-opening to any companies doubting the importance of their DEI efforts or seeing DEI as the first go-to for budget cuts when money gets tight. A strong DEI program at an organization may very well be a key factor in driving employee retention, something that should be top of mind for all employers given the current labor market.

Beyond pure retention, DEI programs foster greater employee satisfaction and engagement, which tends to contribute to greater productivity – another must-have when the labor supply is low.

DEI efforts were once seen by many as a fad on the periphery of more traditional corporate focuses. Today, though, DEI is a central component of the value proposition employees look for when considering an employer. Companies that neglect their DEI efforts risk being relegated to the bottom of workers’ wish lists for employers of choice.

Be inclusive!

Recommended Reading


Are you tired of workplace diversity training that does not link to business? Are you tired of tactics that don’t drive business results? InclusionINC has inclusion and strategic consulting that link inclusion to employee engagement, productivity, innovation and retention, moving inclusion beyond tactics to a critical business strategy.


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