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Case Study

How Children's Health Drove DEI Efforts with a Cultural Climate Audit

15 Minute Read

Overview

The challenge

Data remains a significant barrier for many organizations trying to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). Many institutions struggle either to collect relevant data, analyze data to understand gaps and opportunities, or translate analysis into meaningful next steps. Without all three of these components, organizations can't effectively diagnose issues, set goals, measure efforts, and hold leaders accountable. When creating DEI strategies without these foundational data processes, organizations risk creating ineffective plans that are not based on data-informed priorities.

The organization

Children’s Health is a pediatric health care system based in North Texas. The system includes its flagship hospital, Children’s Medical Center Dallas, as well as Children’s Medical Center Plano, Our Children’s House inpatient rehabilitation hospital, the Children’s Health Care Network, specialty centers, rehabilitation facilities and physician services.

The approach

Before creating a new DEI strategy, Children's Health conducted a cultural climate audit to create an organizational baseline to inform DEI planning and implementation. Through the cultural climate audit, Children's Health collected and analyzed qualitative and quantitative data to understand employee experiences and pinpoint strengths to build on and disparities to address. The organization’s approach demonstrates where to find relevant data, as well as the importance of conducting a comprehensive assessment to create a data-informed strategy.

The results

Children’s Health’s audit provided them with the necessary baseline data to create a DEI strategy with six defined priorities. Based on the results of the audit, the organization is also developing a Metrics Advisory Group, a Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) Dashboard and a D&I Impact Assessment.

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Approach 

The five components

Children’s Health’s cultural climate audit involved five key components. Organizations should look to this approach to not only understand how to find relevant DEI data, but also analyze and use this data for assessing baseline and developing a data-informed strategy.

  • Component

    Run focus groups to understand staff and leader perspectives

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  • Component

    Leverage employee engagement survey results to determine priorities

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  • Component

    Disaggregate demographic data to understand disparities in employee representation

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  • Component

    Embrace transparency and accountability in communication

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  • Component

    Translate analysis into meaningful next steps

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Results

How we know it’s working

Prior to the audit, Children’s Health did not have the necessary baseline data to determine their priorities and road map their strategy moving forward. From the audit, the organization identified 21 themes around awareness and engagement and 6 key D&I priorities. This is valuable because it is most beneficial for organizations to gather baseline data prior to diving into a strategy to ensure that resources are best used, and that the strategy is most effective.

21

Themes around awareness and engagement discovered

6

Key D&I priorities established

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