What Good Looks Like
Every employer has a unique Opportunity Employment story. There are no one-size-fits all solutions, but there are shared goals and methods across the board. What will your story be?
We heard a consistent request from our employer partners for more detail and how-to guidance on implementing equitable talent practices – how to get it started, who should be involved, and what hiccups might one encounter on the way. The case studies gathered in “What Good Looks Like” are a look into the ways a diverse range of employers have implemented equitable talent practices. The resource also includes practical exercises and prompts for readers to assess their own goals.
Practice: Ensure all new roles are posted internally to allow for any interested employee to apply to mitigate favoritism.
Main Challenge: Western Union wanted to increase equitable access and visibility for career development opportunities internally, including jobs, gigs, and training.
Business Case: Internal hiring benefits employers by reducing the hiring time usually taken to hire externally and by reducing the time required for talent sourcing and onboarding. Employers can retain their best talent and institutional knowledge while also fortifying the trust their employees have in them and offering pathways to internal mobility.
Practice: Offer financial wellness programs, such as low interest emergency loans, that help to build employee credit and savings.
Main Challenge: Carhartt identified a need among employees for financial wellness support, as many were using payday lenders and credit cards to cover emergency expenses. They wanted to find an accessible, low-lift option that could be deployed across multiple locations.
Business Case: Practical financial wellness programs, such as emergency expense support, can assist employers with employee retention as hardships can impact an employee’s performance and ability to retain a job. Additionally, this sort of support can bolster company loyalty and assist with talent recruitment while providing employees with a support network in the case of unforeseen emergency expenses.
Practice: Offer financial wellness programs, such as low interest emergency loans, that help to build employee credit and savings. Develop partnerships with local community resources to provide access to culturally relevant social service supports.
Main Challenge: SoPark wanted to continue supporting and retaining high-quality employees. Company leadership sought to create a culture where employees felt comfortable asking for help and seeking out resources they may need so they could bring their best selves to work.
Business Case: Practical financial wellness programs, such as emergency expense support, can improve employee retention as financial hardships can impact an employee’s performance and ability to retain a job. Additionally, this sort of support can bolster company loyalty and assist with talent recruitment while providing employees with a support network in the case of unseen emergencies.
Practice: Offer opportunities for growth and skill-building through cross-training, job shadowing, or other company-sponsored and paid education programs.
Main Challenge: McDonald’s restaurant employees have a wide range of needs and desires related to education and skill-building. Additionally, a McDonald’s job is often a first job for many individuals. Providing these employees with access to education helps develop the workers’ skills, which supports employee recruitment and retention.
Business Case: Employees of color face systemic barriers to education that limit their access to high-paying and knowledge-based occupations. Company-sponsored and paid education programs help employees overcome some obstacles impeding them from continuing their education, while businesses further develop their talent rather than having to hire external talent. By investing in its employees, businesses may also see increases in employee loyalty, retention, and new employee recruitment potential.
Practice: Ensure all employees, particularly frontline supervisors, and managers, understand the value of and are supported in implementing a diversified recruitment strategy.
Main Challenge: Vistra leaders were looking to onboard hiring managers to a new DEI strategy and to prioritize internal hiring while in a virtual environment due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Business Case: The percentage of employees of color continues to grow, and with them, they bring an array of talents, ideas, and multicultural competencies. Their representation in the workforce is key for various reasons, including that the buying power of customers of color has grown over the past two decades and now exceeds $3.4 trillion. Employees of color can connect their employer to communities and customers that companies have not historically understood or served, expanding their markets.
How To Use This Resource
Reflect on your personal values in this work and how that will propel you toward action.
Review case studies for practices you’d like to implement or advance further at your company.
Engage in the discussion questions with your team to think about how to advance opportunity employment practices in your workplace.
Use the suggested first steps as a high-level road map to develop your own implementation plan.
The research included in this report was made possible through funding from Walmart.