HR-Led Diversity Initiatives Advance in Workplace

For Immediate Release

Oct 17, 2006
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SHRM Survey Shows More Companies Embracing Diversity Policies and Practices

(Alexandria, Va., October 17, 2006) More than half of human resource (HR) professionals agreed that diversity in the workplace had advanced significantly in the past ten years, according to the 2006 Workplace Diversity Practices and Changes to the EEO-1 Process Survey Report. The survey was conducted by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).

Of the 438 HR professionals surveyed, 75 percent indicated that their organizations had policies or practices that addressed diversity and 79 percent stated that their organizations offered training on diversity issues, such as anti-discrimination and diversity awareness.

HR professionals take a leading role in diversity efforts with 69 percent reporting that their HR department implemented diversity policies and practices in their organization.

"Great strides have been made in incorporating diversity into the workplace and with renewed commitment, HR professionals will continue to capitalize on diversity as a strategic business advantage," said Susan R. Meisinger, SPHR, president and CEO of SHRM.

The survey also noted that, for the first time in 40 years, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission had revised the EEO-1 reporting form this year.

Private companies with 100 or more employees and federal contractors with 50 or more employees and $50,000 or more in government contracts are required to submit this employee demographics report each year. The revised EEO-1 form will provide more specific information about the penetration of diversity within organizations with new job, race and ethnicity categories.

Although the revised EEO-1 form will assist HR professionals to more effectively implement and lead their organizations' diversity initiatives, survey respondents admitted that challenges - such as employee refusal to voluntarily self-identify race and ethnicity, administrative burdens created by the new rules, and modifications of the organization's human resource information systems to handle the changes - could complicate the transition.

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