Office Depot Makes a Quick Leap from the Bottom to the Top
December 9, 2011 by Liz Cooper, Manager of Corporate Programs, Workplace Project
I was lucky enough to meet Frantz Tiffeau, Senior Manager, Supply Chain Diversity from Office Depot at the 2010 Out & Equal Summit in L.A. Frantz was confident that Office Depot could score much higher than their 45 in the 2011 Corporate Equality Index. As soon as I got back to DC, Frantz and I kept in close touch to prepare for the 2012 CEI survey, and when we met again at the 2011 Out & Equal Summit in Dallas, we were celebrating Office Depot’s 100 percent score. Thanks to Frantz and his extraordinary work with Office Depot’s leadership, they now represent the gold standard in LGBT workplace equality.
This guest post comes from Michael Allison, Executive Vice President of Human Resources for Office Depot
We know that equal rights for all of our associates are imperative to conducting a successful business and recruiting the best talent, so when we found out that Office Depot’s Corporate Equality Index ranking was less than 50 percent, we knew something wasn’t right. A variety of policies and practices were already in place to protect and support the Company’s LGBT employees, so what was missing? The answer – we weren’t utilizing our team to the fullest to answer and complete each of the Human Rights Campaign Foundation CEI survey questions and criteria.
With a strong team of Human Resources, Supply Chain Diversity, Legal Associates, and Executives in place, we worked diligently to implement the CEI ranking conditions. We augmented our benefits to include equal health coverage for transgender individuals, and created a new employee group, the Office Depot Equality Alliance Committee, to discuss training concepts, LGBT opportunities for the Company and other topics. Policies that were already in place included prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation, providing diversity training covering sexual orientation, offering partner health insurance, and more.
We are extremely proud of our leap from 45 to 100 percent, and are honored to be recognized by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation as one of the Best Places to Work for LGBT people. Office Depot will remain committed to supporting diversity in the workplace, and will continue to work hard to maintain our perfect CEI score.
Photo: HRC Workplace Project Associate Liz Cooper at the 2011 Out & Equal Summit
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