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Using technology to promote diversity and organizational equality can increase overall company performance

By Sebastiaan Bos


Discussion of workforce diversity is officially a “hot topic” in corporate boardrooms, cubicle farms and company cafeterias around the globe.

However, often lost in the discussion around workforce diversity is its potential for great economic benefit.

McKinsey Global Institute, which has been studying the issue of gender equality in the corporate world for more than a decade, predicts that narrowing the gender gap by doubling women’s contribution to the global labour market could add up to $15.6 trillion or 11 per cent to global GDP by 2025.

The good news is that when it comes to talent management, it is entirely possible for organizations to take advantage of modern data technology to make positive changes that can help promote gender and ethnic diversity and contribute to an improved overall company performance. This can even be achieved at a global scale.

According to a recent study from the U.K.-based CIPD, there is a strong connection between the use of people analytics, culture and overall business performance in modern business organizations. In fact, the CIPD says there is a rapid rise among corporations around the world to deploy workplace technology that is able to track individuals’ behaviours and provide deeper insights into their performance, productivity and well-being.

The CIPD goes on to say that the use of data in organizations to drive business and employee outcomes is expected to continue well into the future as technology further influences the world of work and as more stakeholders show interest.

In this age of big data, large-scale organizations have never had a better opportunity to make well-informed, data-driven decisions about virtually every aspect of their business, including ensuring that their personnel are provided with a fair and equitable environment in which to see their careers thrive and to contribute in a meaningful way to the success of the business. However, understandably the effort to boost inclusion and equality requires a commensurately large effort to do it right.

Before an organization can take any steps toward improving its commitment to a diverse workplace, it first must have a realistic picture of where it currently stands. In order to set any goals for improvement – and to be able to measure and track the results of any ameliorative efforts – various data points are required, such as gender and ethnicity makeup, pay equity, diversity of the executive management team and many other factors.

This data not only lets business and HR leaders know where their company stands when it comes to promoting equality in the workplace, but it can also help the organization model any number of new scenarios for recruitment, promotion and talent development to correct any unfair imbalances that may exist. This is where an effective organizational design and transformation platform can help.

One way to think about such systems is as “single-source-of-truth” platforms that can provide a centralized source of indisputable individualized employee information that HR teams can quickly and efficiently gather and act upon. By having a clear picture of your organization, HR can make and advise on decisions about where the business can or needs to go and how certain decisions may impact the business overall. Of course, being able to leverage the platform to share the raw data of your organization’s blueprint – qualifications, performance, diversity and equality all considered – with key stakeholders at any point along the journey is critical.

In fact, a single-source-of-truth platform is highly flexible and designed to empower HR teams to:

  • Create dashboards to share with executives.
  • Build visualization and plan “what-if” scenarios for presentations.
  • Provide real-time sharing to all levels of management so everyone is on the same page.
  • Implement plans and monitor metrics within one platform to have a clearer picture on how to make better-informed decisions.


Remember, effectively collecting, protecting and utilizing people data doesn’t happen at the mere click of a button; it’s a substantial undertaking.

Working in conjunction with a core human capital management system, a comprehensive organizational transformation platform should be able to provide granular and visibility into all workplace metrics like diversity and equality across the whole organization.

Unfortunately, older systems often come up short in meeting this need as they often are capable of providing fragmented data views at best and, even then, they usually do so with inaccurate and out-of-date information that is drawn from disparate systems throughout the organization, or even managed manually in spreadsheets. This can easily cause errors, increase costs and lead to challenges with stakeholder visibility that can result in a lack of crucial buy-in during organizational transformations.

Today, as data becomes a more integral part of HR decision-making, it’s time for HR professionals to understand how best to harness the power of people analytics. Technology can, and should, play an important role in that decision.

When that happens, every member of your team can be on the same page with the same information. Your organization will be better prepared to see what it’s doing well, where it can make improvements and more importantly, determine in advance how decisions might impact the organization in the future.


Sebastiaan Bos is the head of product management at Nakisa Hanelly.




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