As diversity, equity and inclusion gains importance alongside global environmental, social and governance (ESG) values, a legal association and its foundation have teamed up with other lawyers and business leaders to design a format for organisations to measure progress in these areas.
The Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC) and the Association of Corporate Counsel Foundation (ACCF) have produced a DEI Maturity Model (DEI MM) in conjunction with an advisory committee of DEI (Diversity, Equity and Inclusion) leaders from the legal and commercial worlds.
“Advancing DEI within an organisation needs to be measurable if it is to be meaningful,” Tanya Khan, the ACC vice president and managing director for Australia and Asia Pacific, told Asia Business Law Journal. “The more we can do to provide leaders with simple tools to assess their DEI agendas and expand them to become repeatable, scalable action plans with real results and expectations attached to them, the more progress we will make to create a truly equitable, diverse and inclusive business environment.”
Legal departments or other entities throughout the world can use the model to gauge the maturity of their DEI initiatives across a wide variety of functional areas that have proved relevant for maximising DEI impact and results. The first version of the DEI MM defines early, moderate and advanced maturity levels for each of the 13 DEI functions. The approach offers leaders a view of their department’s maturity level and a plan for achieving next-level goals.
ACCF partnered with Ethisphere, an Arizona-based corporation that defines and measures corporate ethics, to integrate the DEI MM into Ethisphere’s assessment platform. The solution will offer an efficient way for legal teams to understand where they currently stand with DEI, to benchmark against peers and leverage resources and guidance to map improvements.
Access to the ACCF DEI maturity assessment tool will be free for the public. Members of the ACC, Business Ethics Leadership Alliance and Ethisphere member organisations will receive additional benchmarking analyses including target scores, red-flag scores and links to an advice library with additional observations, recommendations and resources based on the respondents’ maturity score.For additional information regarding the DEI MM, visit https://www.acc.com/diversity-equity-inclusion.