Vault’s Annual Diversity Survey: TARP did not help stem fall in diversity; Minority retention numbers down

by Aman Singh Das | August 27, 2009

  • My Vault

Results of Vault's Annual Diversity Surveywere released this week amid news of diversity gaffes including the lawsuit against Target Stores and Microsoft coming under fire for their photoshoped ad campaigns.

This year the Diversity Survey marked numerous new quantitative questions in addition to the traditional qualitative ones. We added questions asking employers to list a breakdown of their minority counts, and also to list how many stayed five years or more, a key indicator of retention. This helped us gain invaluable insight into real diversity progress at Fortune 1000 companies, or lack thereof in some cases.

We also asked participating employers to rank each for best diversity practices. IBM won top slot followed closely by Sodexo and PepsiCo tied for No. 2. The rest of the Top 10 were:
1. IBM
2. Sodexo
2. PepsiCo
3. Coca Cola
3. Johnson & Johnson
4. Wells Fargo
5. Deloitte
6. GE
7. General Mills
8. Verizon
9. PricewaterhouseCoopers
10. Procter & Gamble

We welcomed several new participants this year to the survey. Some of these included energy companies Allegheny Energy, Chevron, Diageo and National Grid, consulting behemoth Bain & Co., insurance provider Blue Cross Blue Shield, space and defense contractor Aerojet, retailer Wal-mart (returns to the survey after a year’s hiatus) and multinational conglomerate Honeywell International.

With over 217 companies participating, public and private, including state agencies, departments, representing all major industries, statistics confirmed emerging trends. Hiring remained stagnant at best through most of last year, however, companies continued to segregate funding to enhance and develop diversity training.

Broken down by industry, the Vault/INROADS Guide to Corporate Diversity Programin its fifth edition this year encapsulates efforts by employers industry-wide, including government agencies (United Postal Service, NAVAIR, etc.) and departments (North Carolina Office of State Personnel, Minnesota Department of Transportation, etc.). While financial services showed the most decline in 2008 staff levels as well as minority retention, there were some that managed to buck the trend. TD Securities reported no change in employee count while accounting firms actually seemed to suffer the least. Deloitte reported an 8% increase in the number of minorities hired while PricewaterhouseCoopers lost a meager 1% of their minority staffers. On the other end of the spectrum were companies like Citigroup that lost 12% in minorities and dropped 5.76% in employees who had been with the company five years or more, but continued to keep their diversity training programs funded.

The Vault/SEO Guide to Financial Services Diversity Programs, also in its fifth year chronicles financial providers’ diversity efforts nationwide and welcomed several first timers this year. Regions Financial, Vanguard, Liberty Mutual, Northern Trust and American Express were some of the companies that volunteered essential information about their diversity initiatives this year.

Finally, the Vault Guide to Engineering Diversity Programs, in its third year, caters to companies that hire engineering candidates. Architectural firm Pitney Bowes debuted this year as well as Occidental Oil and Gas, FedEx and pharmaceutical firm Bayer.

To view how diverse these Fortune 1000 employers are and how their employee counts, best practices and diversity strategies add up, visit's Diversity Homepage.

Filed Under: CSR

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