Practice Areas | Practice Groups

Diversity and Inclusion

Diversity and inclusion (D&I) is front and center in the minds of many employers today due to its impact on workplace cohesion, legal compliance, market brand, business opportunities, and the ability to hire talent.

Companies of all sizes, educational institutions, and public agencies alike are grappling with complex issues involving how to create and manage a successful D&I program, analyze important diversity metrics, and navigate the legal pitfalls surrounding employment law, public policy, and D&I programs.

Our attorneys are ready to assist with the full spectrum of workplace D&I-related issues. The members of Ogletree Deakins’ Diversity and Inclusion Practice Group have extensive and unique experience assisting employers in the creation, implementation, and management of D&I programs, including conducting thorough analyses of diversity data and identifying meaningful metrics and benchmarks. Our attorneys have also advised employers on legal and compliance issues regarding D&I as well as defended employers when diversity practices are challenged. We also specialize in advising clients facing crisis situations involving serious and reputation-harming allegations of discrimination and harassment.

The practice group assists employers with the following:

Assessment, Metric Analysis, and Strategy

  • Diagnostic assessments of diversity performance, including climate surveys and organizational analyses
  • Comprehensive data analysis of employment practices, including hiring, pay, promotions, and discharges
  • Formulation of proactive strategies to enhance D&I programs, performance, profile, and employee, vendor, and business relationships

Program Development and Implementation

  • Developing and implementing strategic plans with D&I integration
  • Building D&I systems and programming, including employee resource groups and supplier-vendor programs
  • Drafting related policies, communications, and materials
  • Creating processes for gathering feedback and diversity data
  • Guiding public relations, governmental, philanthropic, and community engagement

Legal Advice, Counseling, and Risk-Reduction Audits

  • Counseling clients on legal issues under federal and state laws related to D&I programs, initiatives, and metrics, including best practices to prevent and defend claims
  • Evaluating and assessing D&I programs for legal risks and providing advice on risk-reduction measures
  • Assisting with compliance regarding Section 342 of the Dodd-Frank Act and analyzing its interplay with EEO laws, OFCCP regulations, and affirmative action obligations
  • Conducting risk-reduction audits that analyze current disputes and controversies, internal complaint processes, and lessons learned from employment claims

Learning, Training, and Leadership Development

D&I cannot be effective without proper learning and training, including leadership training. We offer customized training for your board, managers, and employees regarding key D&I topics. This training can be provided by our experienced attorneys and trainers, or we can create training programs for your organization’s internal use. We also offer one-on-one training.

Crisis Mitigation, Management, and Communications

D&I issues have become a matter of company reputation and brand. Our attorneys advise clients facing brand-altering allegations involving discrimination, harassment, and diversity-related issues, and assist companies with crisis prevention, management, and mitigation.

Resources

Ogletree Deakins’ Diversity and Inclusion Practice Group draws upon the vast resources present within one of the nation’s largest labor and employment–focused law firms. The group brings together experts in D&I program implementation, affirmative action/OFCCP compliance, and pay equity to ensure clients are prepared to address the inherent challenges in building effective and legally compliant initiatives. The group also harnesses the expertise within Ogletree Deakins Learning Solutions to craft and deliver diversity-oriented training that meets clients’ needs.

Group Insights