CFA Institute Announces Launching DEI Code for Investment Professionals

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by KnowESG
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A Brief Summary

CFA Institute, a global investment professional, recently announced the launch of its Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Code for the Investment Professions in the U.S. and Canada, requiring organisations to meet certain principles to improve, track and report on DEI in the Investment Industry.

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CFA Institute says the DEI code will help the institutions facilitate DEI action, which will lead to the inclusion of the best talent into the workforce. Subsequently, resulting in a better business outcome and working environments.

Three of the main objectives of the DEI code are defining the present state of DEI in the industry. Two, understanding key principles for firms to implement. Three, providing a metrics-based reporting framework to report on progress.

CFA Institute President and CEO Margaret Franklin said: “To build an industry that is more representative and resilient, far more needs to be done across all aspects of DEI. We recognize that the words diversity, equity, and inclusion mean different things to different people, and each part of the globe may be in a different stage of the DEI effort. We aspire to bring more markets into this work, but we have started in the US and Canada to ground our efforts and to provide us with a path forward.”

The voluntary code entails a series of actions that the signatories should commit, including providing an adopted DEI policy and statement, establishing an oversight governance process and senior leadership ownership, inventing a plan to integrate DEI within the organisation's people processes.

The code also has some principles for signatories to follow, including expanding the diverse talent pipeline, inclusive and equitable hiring, onboarding, promotion and retention practices, promoting DEI in the investment industry etc.

Sarah Maynard, ASIP, Global Head, External Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion, CFA Institute said: “Over successive generations, the investment industry has lacked the knowledge, experience, and, frankly, motivation to build DEI into the framework and culture of organizations. That is now changing. Increasingly, responsibility for DEI is moving to business owners with DEI goals embedded in long-term business strategy. There is no finish line, and effective change will require iterative, continuous improvement with commitment from every individual. It will also require trust, leadership and stringent data handling protocols. Data collection is a tool for greater understanding and wider culture change and is essential to our accountability as DEI Code signatories.”

The DEI Code Working Group worked on the code's principles over two years. The working group comprises members of the CFA Institute Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Steering Committee, DEI practitioners, and investment professionals from several organisations, including State Street Global Advisors, CalPERS, Columbia Investment Management Company, Northern Trust Asset Management etc.

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