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Organizations Recognize Importance of Diversity Education

New ATD research highlights the commitment, usage, and resources that organizations are devoting to DEI&B strategies and initiatives.

(Alexandria, VA) September 8,2021—New research from the Association for Talent Development finds that 78 percent of organizations provide some diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEI&B) education to their employees, and 39 percent began doing so within the last two years.

The report, DEI&B Education for Employees, which is sponsored by OpenSesame, also examined ownership and accountability of initiatives, budget, and accessibility.

“Survey responses suggest that the industry has yet to reach consensus on where the function leading DEI&B education should fall within the organizational chart,” the report explains. One-third of organizations had a dedicated DEI&B function or department, while 25 percent of organizations gave the responsibility to the HR function. In 10 percent of the organizations, the talent development department owned the initiatives.

More than half of the organizations surveyed (56 percent) had a dedicated budget for their DEI&B education, and 30 percent of organizations allocated less than $100 per employee per year.

“Three-quarters of research participants made at least some accommodations for individuals with disabilities in their DEI&B education,” according to the report. “Organizations most frequently accounted for auditory access issues, for example, by providing closed captioning in their DEI&B education (64 percent). At least half made considerations around visual access (for example, developing e-learning content with screen reader compatibility) or physical access (for example, designing activities inclusive to those with physical disabilities).

Other key findings from the report include:

  • Slightly more than a third of organizations that offered DEI&B education provided tailored versions of it for different employee audiences. Those that did reported performing significantly better, on average, on key DEI&B outcomes than those that did not.
  • Seventy-five percent of organizations that offered DEI&B education delivered at least some of it using self-paced e-learning. Slightly fewer (63 percent) used instructor-led virtual classroom training.
  • The activities organizations used most frequently to make DEI&B education more engaging for learners were reflections on employees’ individual experiences (64 percent), guest speakers and leaders as teachers (61 percent), and scenario-based learning (54 percent).

A free webcast will take place Thursday, September 23, at 2 p.m.

About ATD

The Association for Talent Development (ATD) is the world’s largest professional membership organization supporting those who develop the knowledge and skills of employees, improve performance, and help to achieve results for the organizations they serve. Established in 1943, the association was previously known as the American Society for Training & Development (ASTD).

ATD’s members come from more than 120 countries and work in public and private organizations in every industry sector. ATD supports talent development professionals who gather locally in volunteer-led US chapters and international member networks and with international strategic partners.

For more information, visit td.org.

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