PR News 2016 Diversity in PR Awards: Organization

Winner: Consumer Reports

For nearly 80 years, Consumer Reports (CR) has empowered consumers with the knowledge necessary to make better and more informed choices—and has battled in the public and private sectors for safer products and fair market practices.

Over the past two years, Consumer Reports’ Diversity and Inclusion program has focused on educating and raising awareness among staff as to the value of Diversity and Inclusion. Additionally, Consumer Reports has focused on the acquisition of diverse talent. By creating a more diverse and inclusive workplace, CR will identify and grow its audiences, ensuring that the organization broadly mirrors the society that it aims to serve.

Consumer Reports’ Talent Acquisition team has been working closely with its Employee Resource Groups in developing and activating a strategy to identify and acquire diverse talent.

The first phase of the strategy was identifying which diverse organizations and networks CR desired to partner with. A database of diverse organizations was then created. Consumer Reports began by attending affinity-related networking events and job fairs and made connections with leaders in the relevant fields.

In addition, CR provided guidance and coached its ERG teams on what to look for and what to ask potential candidates. Throughout this process, candidates have been fed/added into CR’s pipeline/database.

The initiative has so far been a success, as Consumer Reports has experienced a 34% increase in diverse hires to date this fiscal year as opposed to all of FY ‘15.

Last year, an internal working group began a multi-phased Latino Outreach Strategy Initiative designed to answer two questions: What target segments in the Latino market should CR reach and engage? What strategies should CR implement to engage these segments?

The working group identified several target segments and developed strategies to reach these segments in three Consumer Focus Areas: Health, Money and Autos. The next steps include seizing the opportunity and developing potential business models, building new partnerships and developing strategies for impact and possible streams of revenue.