RACIAL EQUITY DIVIDENDS ASSESSMENT: Forging Data-Informed Pathways to Racial Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging

5 Oct 2021

News, Workforce

RACIAL EQUITY DIVIDENDS ASSESSMENT: Forging Data-Informed Pathways to Racial Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging

By Samuel N. Ndely II, Associate Director of Strategic Partnerships, Center for Economic Inclusion

The global protests following the killing of George Floyd demonstrated the widespread awareness of racial inequity and the determination to do something about it. By the end of 2020, roughly one-third of the nation’s Fortune 1000 companies responded, committing $66 billion to racial-equity initiatives.

As companies donated billions, created new director-level positions focused on diversity and inclusion, and shared the good news about their commitment, many employers are still left with internal, deeply embedded systemic issues that result in inequity, exclusion, and harm to Black, Indigenous, Latinx, Asian employees and overall workforce.

What can companies do to address it? Begin with data. Data benchmarks what currently exists, which allows employers to better understand the impact that any decisions, policies, practices, and systems have on their workforce.


Employer Journey to Racial Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging

As a region facing some of the most alarming and uncivil racial and economic inequities, we believe it is possible to change this descending trajectory and unlock our region’s potential by more deeply embedding principles of anti-racism in our day-to-day actions as employers, measuring the results of those actions, and scaling them together with other employers to achieve results that we are all depending on.

The Center’s work has grown to meet the needs of businesses and agencies across the country committed to closing racial employment, income, and wealth gaps by dismantling institutional racism, and fueling inclusive and equitable regional economic growth.

We offer a suite of racial equity consulting products and services for employers who are ready to compete by maximizing shared value, business results, and regional economic growth. We help employers develop the awareness, knowledge, and tools needed to identify and replace policies and practices that are producing racially exclusive results today, with new racially inclusive market-responsive approaches.


Comprehensive Organizational Analysis

Our approach is grounded in comprehensive internal and market data analysis and optimization through the Racial Equity Dividends Assessment (REDA). Developed by the Center, REDA is our proprietary quantitative and qualitative assessment of employee experiences and perceptions of business policies and practices, as well as the social and economic pressures employees are navigating that may be reflected in employer turnover, productivity, and profitability.

REDA is a powerful data tool we use to identify the areas of an employers’ organization that need attention. As companies are assessed, they will see an increase in productivity and profitability.

REDA centers and leverages the employee experiences to tell the story of an organization, from the inside out. It provides a qualitative and quantitative assessment of the employee experience and perceptions of an organization’s policies and practices. It also takes the social and economic environments and conditions employees navigate that may be reflected in areas of turnover, productivity and profitability, or employee attrition, and engagement.

We monitor and measure the impact of these changes across over 150 dimensions of employee engagement, household financial security, and economic growth and inclusion to close racial income and wealth gaps, increase business results, and expand regional economic growth.


The Voice of the Employee

Direct employee feedback is a crucial. REDA includes qualitative questions designed to show employers where their employees stand on essential issues, including:

  • Organizational Commitment
  • Racial Equity Competencies
  • Workplace Experience
  • Growth and Belonging
  • Compensation & Benefits

All information collected through the assessment remains anonymous.

The qualitative employee data -- coupled with quantitative demographics and data focused on transportation, economic development, and human capital – paints a complete picture and provides a strong foundation to internal systemic change. A series of focus groups and interviews are conducted to dive deeper into the assessment results.

Ultimately, the data is a means to new and powerful pathways of opportunity to embed racial equity and belonging in the journey to becoming a more inclusive workplace for all employees.

It is our hope and belief that as we engage with more and more employers, REDA will provide a unique and innovative approach to look internally within their organization as they take the journey towards becoming an antiracist organization dedicated to creating a culture of racial equity, inclusion, and belonging.



About the Center for Economic Inclusion: The Center for Economic Inclusion is the nation’s first organization created exclusively to close racial wealth gaps and accelerate shared accountability for achieving regional inclusive economic growth. The Center is committed to increasing the number of Black, Indigenous, Latinx, and Asian workers earning family sustaining wages in the Twin Cities region by 10 percent over the next five years. Through the Center’s Employer Inclusivity and Inclusive Growth Consulting Services, the Center partners with employers, like Ramsey County, who also seek to increase competitiveness and profitability by centering racial equity, inclusion, and belonging. Click here to learn more.

About Samuel N. Ndely II: As Associate Director of Strategic Partnerships, Samuel N. Ndely II works directly with private-sector employers, regional leaders, and community champions to equip them with the knowledge, tools, resources, and networks to disrupt and replace racially and economically exclusive policies and practices with new, racially inclusive talent, procurement, investment, and stakeholder policies, practices, and actions.