what is diversity and inclusion

What is Diversity and Inclusion and why is it important in the workplace? Understanding what diversity is and why it is important is the first step in achieving your DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) goals. In recent years many corporations have set out to make their business practice more diverse in many different ways. This includes selecting diverse hires for positions within the company as well as purchasing goods and services from diverse suppliers.

 So, what constitutes diversity and why is this important? Merriam-Webster defines diversity as,

 “the state of having people who are different races or who have different cultures in a group or organization”. – Merriam-Webster.com, Dictionary

Many people believe that diversity only applies to ethnicity, and while ethnicity is one factor in what may make a supplier diverse, this also applies to companies or services that are run by women, veterans, or members of the LGBTQ+ community. As well as people of different religious backgrounds or individuals with disabilities. Diversifying your business with members of these different communities is the first step in achieving true inclusion and equity.

Who benefits from diversity, equity, and inclusion? Diversity and the inclusion of people from all walks of life and backgrounds in your business provides many benefits to both your company and the communities from which your suppliers and colleagues come from. A diverse team of people with different experiences, backgrounds, and views creates an out of the box, collaborative process where everyone will learn from each other and achieve outcomes that would otherwise not be possible without this wide range of diversity of thought. All of this helps to create a forward thinking, inclusive, and creative workspace. And not only will your business benefit from having a diverse workforce with a wider global view, but this practice of true inclusiveness will also help to provide equity and stability to the communities being included. For example, when you hire or purchase from a certified LGBTQ+ owned business, you are paving the way for success and acceptance within these communities. Not only by providing work that helps to build financial independence and stability within the community, but also by setting an example for other enterprises. True DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) is achieved when a diverse group of people comes together to collaborate in a level playing ground where everyone’s thoughts, skills, and opinions are valued and heard to work toward and achieve the same goal. In September 2020 Forbes magazine released an article titled “8 Reasons Why Diversity and Inclusion Are Essential to Business Success”. The author, Bianca Miller Cole stated,

Having a working environment filled with employees of different backgrounds, skills, experiences and knowledge means that there will be an increase in innovative and creative ideas. This can have a huge impact on the business as this will help the business expand in the long run. Employees will feel more comfortable to share their ideas with others with unique ideas being shared amongst a diverse environment. This helps a business stand out from those businesses that still function with only ‘one voice’.” – Forbes Magazine September 15, 2020.

How can you achieve diversity, equity, and inclusion in your business? Now that we understand “what is diversity and inclusion”, you may be wondering what the first step is in creating DEI within your organization. In an article titled “What Does Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Mean in the Workplace?”, Author Kate Heinz defines DEI as,

DEI stands for diversity, equity and inclusion. Diversity is the presence of differences within a given setting. Equity is the process of ensuring that processes and programs are impartial, fair and provide equal possible outcomes for every individual. Inclusion is the practice of ensuring that people feel a sense of belonging in the workplace”. – Kate Heinz August 10,2021

Not only do you want to work with diverse staff members and suppliers, but you also want to be sure you are working with qualified professionals and certified suppliers. This is why the assistance of supplier diversity management software is so important! Supplier diversity management software is used to connect enterprises with suppliers or individuals to create productive and rewarding networking channels that work towards achieving DEI. 

Benefits Of Supplier Diversity Management Software For Enterprises

Working with a service like Certifiably Diverse that provides supplier diversity management software is a major asset to any organization looking to network with certified, reliable, diverse vendors and individuals. Certifiably Diverse takes the guesswork out of finding the perfect fit for your organization. Certifiably Diverse provides businesses with a high quality, vetted, and ever-growing database of diverse suppliers and individuals that are available for hire and partnerships. The diversity management software from Certifiably Diverse will do all the legwork to ensure you are provided with the best candidates that are:

  • Diverse
  • Certified (ensures candidates are in compliance with certification requirements)
  • Reliable
  • Qualified
  • Well Vetted
  • Well Matched For Your Needs

A major benefit of using this software is that all of the resources you need to start building a list of prospective diverse suppliers are at your fingertips in one place. This eliminates the need to create multiple accounts and scour the internet, vetting and building a reputable database, because the work has been done for you. So now all you need to do is sit back and watch the profiles come in. Supplier diversity management software makes diversifying your practice and achieving DEI easy. 

Some noteworthy features of Certifiably Diverse’s supplier diversity management software include:

  • Real Time Messaging – Certifiably Diverse makes communication with suppliers and individuals easy through real time messaging and emails that can be managed through this software. 
  • Easy Sourcing – You can easily search our database for certified, diverse suppliers, tailored to your particular wants and needs. Certifiably Diverse makes it easy to search for potential suppliers by certified diversity status such as woman owned, minority owned, Veteran owned, LGBTQ+ owned, Disabled Veteran owned, and much more. You can then narrow down the search even further by filtering by industry, business type, NAICS codes, location, and more.
  • Auditing and Reporting Tools – Once you have compiled a list of potential suppliers you can save your lists and run audits to check on certification status, export reports, organize tasks, and send out messages, to make organization and communication easy. 

Benefits of Supplier Diversity Management Software For Suppliers and Individuals

Much like with the service provided to Enterprises, creating a profile as a supplier or individual is easy and removes the hassle of registering for multiple different programs, as all the tools you need will be in one place. These are some of the benefits of using Certifiably Diverse for suppliers and individuals.

  • Free – Creating a profile as a vendor or individual on Certifiably Diverse is absolutely free. All you need to do is set up your company or individual profile to provide accurate information about your business and services.
  • User Friendly – Creating an account is also easy, and this software allows you to easily input your branding, color theme, logos, and certifications, so everything you need to convey who you are to enterprises is in one place and easy to understand and easy to use. 
  • Easy Management Tools – This supplier diversity management software makes managing certifications, organizing tasks, and communicating with suppliers easy. You will receive reminders when certifications are nearing expiration dates and notifications when you receive real time messages from enterprises. You can also create different roles for members of your team to give different levels of access to your profile to other colleagues.
  • One Stop Shop – Using this supplier diversity management software eliminates the need to register dozens, if not hundreds of times with individual corporations. After you create your profile, you will be discoverable by our entire database of enterprises looking for diverse suppliers and individuals, and able to make meaningful connections in a well-organized space that will take the hassle out of networking.

What should you know about Certifiably Diverse?

Earlier we asked, “What is diversity and inclusion?”  Certifiably Diverse is dedicated to providing education to help people understand diversity, equity, and inclusion. Certifiably Diverse is also on a mission to make achieving DEI in business easy and sustainable through supplier diversity management software. The founder and visionary behind Certifiably Diverse has described her mission as such,

“My vision is to amplify the voice of the diverse suppliers to have an equal opportunity to grow their business through access, continuing education and relationships. Certifiably Diverse will drive direct revenue growth for large enterprises and strengthen diverse communities leading to economic impact throughout the world for years to come.”  

– Tracy Grace

Another notable aspect of Certifiably Diverse is that the software company creating it is a diverse business. Certifiably Diverse is a certified woman-owned, NMSDC, SBA, DBE, INC 5000, and ISO business. If you are interested in using Certifiably Diverse’s supplier diversity management software as an enterprise you can contact Certifiably Diverse here to request a demo or learn more about getting started. And if you are interested in creating an individual or supplier profile with Certifiably Diverse, you can follow this link to get started with your free account! To learn more about growing your business with Certifiably Diverse, and responsibly sourcing certified diverse work relationships, you can call or contact us online for more information.  




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