Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging

6 best practices for measuring diversity, equity, and inclusion

As the saying goes: what gets measured, gets managed. So if you want your programs to make a real impact, measuring diversity, equity, and inclusion is key.

How often do you assess internal attitudes around DEI? Should you regularly check in with your employees about your initiatives?


Companies that think they’ve solved all their DEI problems are the most likely to actually have DEI problems.



Complacency has consequences in every area of a business. Diversity, equity, and inclusion are no different.

DEI requires conscious effort from everyone in an organization to be a success. 

Things like your recruitment process, how managers communicate with their employees, and what employees say when they think their managers aren’t listening need monitoring so that standards remain high—and inclusive.

Unfortunately, almost a quarter of companies don’t bother measuring diversity, equity, and inclusion progress.

And only a fifth of global organizations measure the business impact of their DEI initiatives. Despite how much data is already out there about the benefits of diversity in almost every area, from company finances to employee mental health.

So, how do you go about measuring diversity, equity, and inclusion in your organization?

Check in as a business regularly

How diverse are your departments? How many women, people of color, or people with disabilities are managers? Where can you improve?

While there can be backlash around quotas, they do work. They help combat the desire to hire people like ourselves that leads to groupthink.

Instead, we’re challenged to see things differently and embrace people from all walks of life.

In one study, when quotas were instituted to hire more women, it helped exclude incompetent men.

Everything has pros and cons. Quotas aren’t perfect, but they can be a good starting point when you want to improve how you’re measuring diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Look at your hiring and retention rates

How long do new hires stay? Do candidates drop off during the hiring process?

Over 75% of candidates value a diverse workplace. So could your lack of diversity be turning candidates off as they’re applying and interviewing?

Your hiring and retention rates can tell you a lot about your business—and how candidates, employees, and even customers perceive you.

If employees don’t stick around for very long, or some departments have higher turnover than others, it’s a sign that something is wrong and needs to be addressed right away.

Measuring diversity, equity, and inclusion at every point within your hiring process can help expose areas that need more attention.

Send surveys—and collect anonymous data

It’s the comments employees make when they think management isn’t listening that really tell you what they think.

There’s no real way to monitor those—they can turn into a he said/she said/they said if someone reports it—but anonymized surveys can help.

You can ask employees how they feel and what they’ve heard/witnessed/experienced. Even if they don’t want to officially report things that have happened, this is still important information to have.

Allowing employees to respond anonymously gives them a feeling of safety and removes the fear of reprisals. It can then open the door to more honest conversations between HR teams about what’s really happening internally and how to improve it.

Workrowd can help you send employee surveys and examine the results so that you can take action sooner. Our tools are especially useful when it comes to measuring diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Look at the setup of your ERGs

What ERGs do you have? Who runs them?

Your ERGs will tell you what types of employees work within your business and potentially highlight gaps.

For example, do you have an LGBTQ+ or Pride group? Does the lack of one suggest that you don’t have many LGBTQ+ employees, or that they don’t feel comfortable being themselves at work?

What about one for women of color in the workplace? Employees with invisible illnesses?

The more diverse your ERGs are, the more it reflects an open, honest, welcoming company culture. And the more their data can support your efforts around measuring diversity, equity, and inclusion.

But don’t get complacent! 

These groups need to be active, too. 

If they rarely or never hold events or conversations, it still requires some investigating to find out what isn’t working.

Perhaps you need a new tool, like Workrowd, to help you manage your ERGs. It can help with everything from daily updates, to document sharing, to networking.

Want to find out more? Book your free demo today.

Track workshop attendees

How many people attend your DEI workshops? And how many attendees actually engage with the material?

In a previous role, I went to a diversity workshop and many of the participants made sarcastic or stereotypical comments.

It was pretty obvious they were there as a box-ticking exercise and didn’t understand why diversity matters. I couldn’t help but feel like they didn’t actually learn anything from it, and they were going to laugh about it after. There was little sense of empathy or understanding.

It wasn’t a bad workshop, but employees need to engage with the materials for them to make a difference in the workplace. And if they don’t, you need to work out where the root of the problem is.

There are lots of reasons people don’t engage with diversity practices, despite the many benefits it brings to businesses. The sooner you spot these issues, the sooner you can tackle them.

And the sooner you can start seeing better outcomes across your work on measuring diversity, equity, and inclusion

Consider the qualitative stuff, too

Measuring diversity, equity, and inclusion is about so much more than putting numbers on it.

It’s about your employees’ attitudes, internally and externally.

Do they collaborate well with each other? Within teams and interdepartmentally?

Do they make negative comments when someone who’s neurodivergent doesn’t understand a task? When someone who’s LGBTQ+ walks by?

The small things that are often hard to measure are your real indicators of DEI success.

They tell you about the inner workings of your employees’ minds and if they’re really on board with your DEI initiatives.

You’ll never achieve true diversity, equity, and inclusion success until they are.


Measuring diversity, equity, and inclusion is about so much more than numbers on a spreadsheet. It’s about the things you can’t measure, too: the stories employees tell themselves and each other. That’s where you’ll find the real information on your DEI efforts and whether they’re working.

If you’re ready to level up on measuring diversity, equity, and inclusion, Workrowd has the tools you need. With ERG management features, automated feedback surveys, and real-time analytics dashboards, you’ll always know exactly how your DEI efforts are performing.

Want to see how our all-in-one platform can make measuring diversity, equity, and inclusion a breeze? Write us at to set up some time to chat.

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