Diversity and Inclusion is a Priority in the DoD
Diversity and Inclusion Strategic Plan 2012-2017 Addresses Workforce Biases
The Department of Defense (DOD) has multiple approaches that involve strategic methods in which they promote diversity and inclusion in their workforce. Many of the implicit individual bias targeted programs are addressed in the DOD’s Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) Strategic Plan 2012- 2017(1), which emphasizes the President’s Executive Order 13583--directing Executive Departments to develop and implement D&I strategies in human resource components. These programs are decentralized and run by Military Departments and Defense Agencies, and run as ad hoc stand-alone sessions that incorporate various D&I topics into supervisory and senior leader mandatory trainings.
Further, the DOD Office of Diversity Management and Equal Opportunity (ODMEO)(2) addresses implicit institutional efforts by collaboration with the Military Services to implement D&I plans in outreach programs designed to connect with relevant communities and by expanding awareness of the Department’s many education, training, and leadership opportunities for civilian service. For example, the Department of Defense operates a Workforce Recruitment Program (WRP) for College Students and Recent Graduates with Disabilities. The WRP engaged over 300 colleges /universities and in 2015 hired 234 WRP summer interns from the 1800 WRP applicants, of which over 40percent were STEM majors. OPM has cited the WRP as a model program. Additionally, the DOD led the way in implementing Government-wide training programs such as OPM’s Game Changers and The New Inclusion Quotient, which included train the trainer efforts on D&I initiatives. Other programs include a broad range of High Visibility Employment Initiatives that are managed by the DOD’s Defense Civilian Personnel Advisory Service (DCPAS), and the Recruiters Consortium, which facilitates and explore efforts to maximize human resource practices in hiring and recruiting for the civilian workforce.
The DOD has developed three specific goals at addressing explicit bias within their D&I Strategic Plan 2012-2017. The first is to ensure leadership commitment to an accountable and sustained diversity effort. The second is to employ an aligned strategic outreach effort to identify, attract, and recruit from a broad talent pool reflective of the best our Nation has to offer. The third is to develop, mentor and retain top talent from across the total force. The desired outcome is to attract and retain a competent, qualified and diverse workforce, establish the DOD as an employer of choice, and develop a diverse future generation of organizational leaders.
Additionally, the DOD’s current actions to address implicit individual bias for students receiving support at federally funded Institutions of Higher Education are taken through a high profile scholarship-for-service program: The Science, Mathematics and Research for Transformation (SMART) Scholarship.(3) The SMART program operates under Title 10 U.S.C., and is a highly competitive program. Ensuring D&I in this program, the evaluation board consists of a diverse panel with participation from Historically Black College and University representatives and other Minority Institutions and has removed all demographic information from the applications in order to minimize the impact of implicit bias.
3) SMART scholars attend both public and private universities. Many of these universities receive Federal and state support.
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15 July 2016