April 14, 2022 by Phil Porado
Nearly all Canadian brokers agree addressing diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) issues is linked to business success, according to a late 2021 Canadian Underwriter online survey of 208 brokers across Canada, made possible with the support of Sovereign Insurance.
It found 91% agree brokers see DEI practices as important.
Organizations with no diversity within their senior leadership, however, were less likely to take that view. And 19% of firms in that category believed they could be successful without addressing diversity. Noted one respondent with 20 years in the business: “We hire based on best qualified. See no risk in that.”
But the 91% of brokers who said failure to address diversity harms business outcomes cited several concerns:
More than three quarters (77%) of brokers said their firms provide some level of encouragement for diverse applicants. Again, the number is higher (97%) for firms with diverse leadership.
The most frequently mentioned methods are highlighting diversity on the firm’s career site (27%) and within job descriptions (22%), and advertisement of open positions through diverse channels and job boards (23%).
What’s more, 21% of brokers said their firms strive to create diverse hiring and interview panels.
Eighty-four per cent of employees surveyed at most Canadian brokerages said their firms engage in practices aimed at encouraging diverse talent, including:
Feature image by iStock.com/ferrantraite