More Than Half of Russell 1000 Now Discloses Workforce Race/Ethnicity Demographics

By Ani Huang posted 03-03-2022 15:19


According to a new study by JUST Capital, about 55% of Russell 1000 companies proactively disclose some type of racial/ethnic workforce data, up from only 32% in January 2021, reflecting external demands for expanded diversity disclosure.

The study, which analyzed workforce demographic disclosures between January and September 2021, found the following:

  • 20% of companies report “overall people of color” data, which groups together all employees referred to as “white” or “non-minority” on a non-disaggregated basis. This approach has come under fire for being overly broad and lumping together individuals of different backgrounds in a way that does not reflect true diversity goals.

  • 24% of companies disclose more detailed information, disaggregating at a minimum a breakdown of employees identifying as Asian, Black/African-American, and Hispanic or Latino.

  • 11% of companies (104 of the Russell 1000) now disclose an EEO-1 report.

JUST Capital seems to support the inclusion of an EEO-1 disclosure requirement in the anticipated SEC rule on the basis that it’s standardized and comparable among companies as well as an already existing format. However, many companies have noted that the job categories are outdated and confusing to employees and investors, and a more streamlined and modern approach such as the one that BlackRock uses would be preferable.

As previously reported, the SEC is expected to propose a new rule on human capital data this year. The rule is likely to include more specific disclosure requirements for workforce diversity and employee turnover, among other metrics. The Center On Executive Compensation and HR Policy Association will submit comments to the SEC once the proposed human capital metrics rule is published in the Federal Register.