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Organizations seek to build diverse pipelines of talent comprised of individuals who can rise to attain senior operating roles (i.e., positions running large businesses within the corporation.) The 2020 HR@Moore Survey of Chief HR Officers sought to assess the level of diversity in terms of women and racial minorities in these pipelines, identify the obstacles to increasing the number of diverse candidates and strategies for successfully building diversity in these pipelines. Our results show a lack of diversity in these pipelines with 60% white males, 22% white females and no more than 5% in any other sex/race categories. CHROs primarily pointed to supply problems as the biggest obstacles to increasing the number of women and racial minorities, but they also noted significant internal obstacles such as insufficient attention to developing these talent pools and bias in hiring and promotion decisions. They proposed focusing more on intentionally developing candidates internally and exerting meaningful effort to hire externally as the most effective strategies to increasing the numbers of diverse candidates in these pools. Based on all of the responses, we focus recommendations on six areas: Setting the tone from the top to manage and measure the pipeline, building the pipeline through broader recruiting sources, using development to refine/expand the pipeline, managing promotion processes to ensure flow through the pipeline, leveraging external recruitment to fill the pipeline, and using retention strategies to prevent leakage in the pipeline.

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© 2020, University of South Carolina

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