Organizational Wellness

Diversity and Inclusion Consultants: A Guide for HR Departments

Dec 19, 2023
Last Updated Feb 13, 2024

The value of diversity and inclusion in the workplace has never been more evident. DEIB has emerged as a powerful driver of innovation and sustainable success for businesses across industries. Fostering a diverse workforce also helps attract top talent, with 76% of job candidates considering diversity an important factor when evaluating potential jobs. 

While organizations across the globe recognize the immense benefits of creating a diverse and inclusive environment, the journey toward achieving true workplace harmony is still ongoing. 

Wondering how you can help all of your employees feel included and safe? Organizations looking can call in a diversity and inclusion consultant to implement inclusive practices and foster positive relationships with all employees.

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What Is a Diversity and Inclusion Consultant?

Diversity and inclusion consultants — also known as DEI consultants, diversity consultants, or Diversity Equity and Inclusion Specialists — work closely with HR departments to support implementation of workplace inclusivity initiatives. They intimately understand the many benefits of a diverse workplace, the challenges organizations face in achieving their DEI goals, and ways to overcome those barriers.

One of their key responsibilities help develop and execute comprehensive diversity and inclusion plans. This can include assessing the organization’s current state, identifying gaps and areas for improvement, and designing initiatives that align with the company’s overall goals and values. 

What Do Diversity and Inclusion Consultants Do?

Every DEIB professional will have their area of expertise and program offerings, but the general value they offer include the following.

Creating and Overseeing Diversity Programs 

Consultants are responsible for developing and implementing diversity programs that address the specific needs and goals of a unique workforce. These can include diversity recruitment strategies, mentoring programs, or cultural competency training.

Organizing Events Focused on Inclusion 

Inclusion consultants often organize and facilitate events related to diversity and inclusion initiatives. These events and meetings are designed to promote awareness, education, and skill-building on various topics like unconscious bias and cultural sensitivity.

Researching the Latest Trends 

Consultants are responsible for staying informed about evolving policies in the field of diversity and inclusion. They leverage this knowledge to update and develop more inclusive policies and practices within the organization. 

Understanding Employees with Different Backgrounds 

Diversity consultants actively listen, engage, and build relationships with individuals from various demographic groups, allowing them to gain insights into specific challenges and needs of different employee populations. 

Creating Equity

One of the primary objectives of diversity and inclusion consulting is to foster equity within the organization. This means identifying and addressing systemic biases, discrimination, and barriers that may hinder equal opportunities for employees.

Compiling Data from Inclusion Surveys

Consultants gather data to assess the current state of DEI within the organization. Once they analyze this data and generate reports that offer recommendations for improvement, they share them with leadership teams to inform decision-making and drive strategic action.

Who Needs a Diversity and Inclusion Consultant?

Inclusion consultants can help any organization aiming to become more welcoming. More often than not, however, they are called to solve specific issues in company culture. Such situations that drive companies to reach out to a DEI consultant include:

Lack of Improvement in Company Culture 

Companies that have implemented DEI initiatives but have not seen significant improvement may hire inclusion consultants. Getting an outside perspective can help them better assess the current state of the organization, potential barriers, and effective strategies tailored to their specific situation.

Lack of Understanding of the Updated Vocabulary 

Some organizations may struggle to keep up with the most up-to-date inclusive language. Consultants can provide education and training on communicating with sensitivity. 

DEI Incidents 

Companies that experience incidents where DEI was involved, such as discriminatory acts or conflicts, may require the expertise of an inclusion consultant. These professionals can help address the aftermath of the incident and guide the organization toward a more inclusive and respectful environment.

Lack of Diversity 

Any company that lacks diversity can benefit from DEI consultants. To combat the negative effects of a homogenous workforce, they bring expert knowledge, guidance, and strategies. Consultants help organizations build inclusive cultures and create environments where all employees can thrive.

Diversity and Inclusion Consultant Qualifications

Although there is no specific training required for diversity and inclusion consultants, qualifications for the role encompass a combination of educational background, skills, and knowledge. Some of the key qualifications are: 

  • A bachelor’s degree in a Human Resources-related field. This provides a foundational understanding of HR principles and practices, which equips consultants with knowledge about organizational dynamics and HR strategies. Consultants can apply this knowledge to DEIB initiatives.
  • Strong communication skillsEffective communication is crucial for diversity and inclusion consultants. They must be able to engage and connect with individuals at all levels of the organization.
  • Strong organizational skills. DEIB consultants often manage multiple projects, initiatives, and events simultaneously. Strong organizational skills are essential for managing time, resources, and priorities effectively.
  • Respect for confidentiality. In the course of their work, diversity and inclusion consultants may come across sensitive information and issues related to employees' backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives. Consultants need to maintain strict confidentiality and adhere to ethical standards to create a safe and trusted environment for employees to share their experiences and concerns.
  • A detail-oriented mindset. Attention to detail is crucial for diversity and inclusion consultants, as their work involves data analysis, policy review, program evaluation, and identification of barriers and biases. They must be meticulous in their approach to ensure accuracy and precision in their assessments, recommendations, and reporting.
  • The ability to make data-based recommendations. Diversity and inclusion consultants should be capable of collecting and analyzing relevant data to inform their strategies and recommendations. They need to possess the skills to interpret and derive insights from data related to diversity metrics, employee surveys, representation, and retention rates.

How to Improve Diversity and Inclusion in Your Organization

Diversity and inclusion can help guide organizations toward more equitable environments. With their strong interpersonal skills and passion for diversity in the workplace, these consultants can promote meaningful change. 

Offering employee wellness programs like Gympass is another way to demonstrate your commitment to the health and happiness of your workforce. Ninety-three percent of workers say that their wellbeing at work is just as important as salary, and diversity efforts can support a positive company culture. 

Gympass is here to help you improve work-life wellness. Talk with a wellbeing specialist today to strengthen your organization’s culture!

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Gympass Editorial Team

The Gympass Editorial Team empowers HR leaders to support worker wellbeing. Our original research, trend analyses, and helpful how-tos provide the tools they need to improve workforce wellness in today's fast-shifting professional landscape.


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