HRCS 8 Preliminary Results: Diversity & Inclusion

By Dave Ulrich, Mike Ulrich, Erin Wilson Burns, Patrick Wright | April 14, 2021

Key Takeaways:

  • Companies across the globe have directly and unequivocally addressed discrimination and harassment.
  • Ensuring everyone has equal opportunities to succeed remains elusive
  • HR professionals do contribute to how senior business leaders communicate the business imperative for diversity and inclusion.

The research from HRCS Round 8 will help HR professionals and business leaders gain a deeper understanding of what individual HR competencies drive business success and how HR practices impact the business’s ability to win in the marketplace.

One of the areas of particular interest is Diversity & Inclusion. Our initial data suggests that companies across the globe have taken a strong line on directly and unequivocally addressing discrimination and harassment. At the same time, the broader goal, and resultant business impact, of ensuring everyone has equal opportunities to succeed remains elusive.

Organization Diversity & Inclusion Items
  Global Average
The leaders of my organization have made it clear that harassment will not be tolerated in this organization, regardless of who you are. 4.4
At my organization, harassment of any sort is taken seriously and dealt with appropriately. 4.4
If I had a concern about harassment or discrimination, I know where and how to report that concern. 4.5
People from all backgrouns have equal opportunities to succeed at my organization. 4.1
The leaders of my organization emphasize the value of diversity in creating a stronger organization. 4.0
It really feels like everybody is on the same team at my organization. 3.7
There is an atmosphere of trust at my organization. 3.8

Digging closer to home, HR managers appear to be better at fostering inclusion and explicitly valuing diversity than non-HR managers. Meanwhile, HR professionals are more critical than non-HR employees regarding how senior business leaders are communicating the business imperative for diversity and inclusion.

Organization Diversity & Inclusion Items by HR and Non-HR
  HR Non-HR Difference
My manager welcomes and encourages differences of opinion. 4.2 4.1 0.09
My manager values people with different talents, skills, and backgrounds. 4.3 4.2 0.06
My manager emphasizes the value of diversity in creating a stronger team. 4.2 4.1 0.05
The leaders of my organization emphasize the value of diversity in creating a stronger organization. 3.9 4.1 -0.17

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Dave has published over 30 books on leadership, organization, and human resources. These ideas have shaped how people and organizations deliver value to customers, investors, and communities. He has consulted and done research with over half of the Fortune 200 and worked in over 80 countries.  He has received numerous public recognitions and lifetime awards for his work. 

About the author

Mike Ulrich (PhD) is an Assistant Professor at the Jon M. Huntsman School of Business at Utah State University. He is the Co-Director of the Human Resource Competency Study, one of the world's largest studies of HR professionals, involving data from nearly 40,000 people across dozens of countries and hundreds of organizations.

Erin is a principal at The RBL Group with 25 years of experience in leadership and strategic HR consulting.

About the author

Patrick Wright is Thomas C. Vandiver Bicentennial Chair and founder and faculty director of the Center for Executive Succession in the Darla Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina. Professor Wright teaches, conducts research, and consults in the area of how firms use people as a source of competitive advantage.

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