Today, Vibrant Pittsburgh, in collaboration with the Allegheny Conference on Community Development, proudly released the 2020 Vibrant Index Summary Report in a public report to the region. Pittsburgh is one of just a handful of regions nationwide that tracks its progress on DEI. The Vibrant Index Diagnostic evaluated local companies in ten impact areas and provides recommendations to improve each participating organization. The impact areas are Written Commitment and Transparency, Benefits and Policies, Employee Networks, Leadership, Training and Education, Accountability Metrics, Talent Engagement and Recruitment, Supplier Diversity, Community Engagement, and 2020: Organizational Response to the Pandemic, Protests, and Sociopolitical Unrest.
This year, the tenth category of Organizational Response was added to examine organizational responses to COVID-19 and systemic injustice in 2020. Participation in the Index increased by 56%.
Companies that participate in the Index undergo an internal diagnostic of company processes and culture to examine where and how there is room for improvement. Participants benefit from sharing best practices and progress with other companies in the region and within their sector and size range.
Companies that achieved at or above the 95th percentile on the 2020 Vibrant Index Diagnostic
are considered “Vibrant Champions”. This year's Champions are: The Community College of Allegheny County, PNC Bank, The Pittsburgh Promise, and UPMC.
Key Findings from the 2020 Vibrant Index Diagnostic:
- 94% of respondents reported that developing an inclusive culture was a top priority for their DEI initiatives
- 85% of respondents offered Employee Assistance Programs
- 78% of respondents state explicitly that they do not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation
- 76% of respondents have an internal advising body dedicated to diversity and inclusion
- Only 31% of respondents’ senior executives have a specific DEI component as part of their individual performance evaluations
Allegheny Conference on Community Development President and CEO, Stefani Pashman, states, “in order to truly achieve the regional vitality that we all seek, we must collaboratively fight institutional racism and work towards a region that is equitable for all regardless of background or zip code. The Allegheny Conference is proud to partner with Vibrant Pittsburgh by engaging our member companies – some 300 regional employers - in this important work. The Vibrant Index is an essential roadmap for progress and systemic change.”
Vibrant Pittsburgh President and CEO, Sabrina Saunders Mosby acknowledged that, "in order for the Vibrant Index to truly show the strides being made in our region, all dedicated organizations must participate fully in the Vibrant Index initiative, utilizing the Diagnostic annually and committing to tackle this work to improve our region together. She went on to share, "the past year has shown that a focus on diversity, or increasing representation of people from various backgrounds, perspectives, and experiences, is only part of the equation; inclusion, making space and amplifying the voices of everyone in the workplace, is equally important."
During the event, Mosby also issued a 2021 Call to Action for the regions businesses:
- Many organizations issued public pledges to support DEI. More organizations must share the action steps, plans, and measures put in place to uphold their public statements, therefore holding themselves accountable.
- Non-discrimination policies must be intentional and should be expanded to mention all marginalized or historically underrepresented groups.
- The business community must quickly provide more formal opportunities to express pronouns.
- Organizations interested in improving morale, retention, cultures of belonging and attracting a diversity of talent need to provide more employee networks.
- Organizations committed to building cultures of inclusion should implement a leadership body focused on DEI.
- Organizations must track the career progression of underrepresented employees as part of a retention strategy.
- The ways in which organizations handled the employee experience during the tumult of 2020 provide a window into organizational values.
- When our country faces any act of racial injustice, organizations should provide clear support to employees and reevaluate DEI policies.
The full Summary Report can be accessed here: 2020 Vibrant Index Summary Report
The recording of the Report to the Region is available here: Vibrant Index: Report to the Region