Grads of Life commends the launch of the American Opportunity Index, a new data-driven tool that assesses companies on measures of opportunity and mobility for their workers.
Last week, partners at Burning Glass Institute, Harvard Business School and Schultz Family Foundation launched the American Opportunity Index, a new data-driven tool that assesses companies on measures of opportunity and mobility for their workers. At Grads of Life we commend this new initiative, which represents a critical step forward in building an America where all people have access to economic opportunity and mobility. We are delighted to see so many Grads of Life partners as well as OneTen and BRT members on the list and congratulate all companies listed for their leadership in one or more areas.
“Understanding how companies provide opportunity and mobility, as compared to their peers in corporate America, has been elusive territory to date. Having common benchmarks through this Index will allow companies to reflect on where they are strong and where they might focus more intentional efforts.”
Partner & Head of Research and Thought Leadership
Grads of Life
The index lists the top 50 companies overall as well as five additional categories of leadership, including employers that offer a career launchpad, career stability, career growth, growing talent from within, and advancement without a degree.
As we think about how this new tool can support the growing movement of employers committed to driving equity through employment, here are three observations:
1. We are encouraged that 67% of the Fortune 250 are demonstrating leadership in at least one area. This is evidence that the country’s largest companies inherently understand the business and social value of prioritizing workers and know that talent development is critical to their competitiveness. Translating what the largest companies do well so that mid and small sized companies can follow suit will be an important opportunity going forward.
2. Understanding the race and gender segmentation of these outcomes will be important. As our latest research suggests, significant gaps remain in pay and promotion outcomes for workers of color across corporate America. We believe it is critical to hold companies accountable for examining how access and mobility in the workforce differ by race and gender and encourage further data transparency to enable this analysis across the Fortune 250.
3. More research is needed to understand what’s causal in differentiating the Index leaders. Companies should consider tracking and sharing more of their data, including the policies and practices they are actively investing in like skills-based hiring, to help understand over time what leads to differential outcomes on the American Opportunity Index. We support companies in doing this through our Opportunity Identifier tool.
Grads of Life is committed to understanding what practices and policies drive the outcomes analyzed in the index and our mission is to enable more companies to rise to the top. We do this through a combination of research, tools, and strategic advisory support to companies. We look forward to further exploring the Index and helping companies leverage it to take action. If you are interested in partnering with us, please be in touch.