PICPA's Report on Need for Diversity

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The Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants (PICPA) released Increasing Talent, Clients, and Revenue at Your Organization: The Business Case and Toolkit for Diversity, which addresses the diversity challenges facing many organizations, particularly midsize accounting firms, throughout Pennsylvania.

The PICPA partnered with Drexel University and Howard University to prepare a practical guide to help firms understand the need for a diverse work culture and to assist them in implementing a diversity strategy.

"As CPAs, we know that the numbers tell the story", says Julius C. Green, CPA, JD, chair of the PICPA's Diversity Committee. "Companies that are not embracing a workforce made up of people with varying backgrounds and experience will not be prepared to compete in a global market." 

The report includes US Census Bureau statistics on the rising minority populations in the United States and Pennsylvania. It also highlights the growing number of minority-owned businesses. The results from two diversity-in-the-workplace surveys sent to PICPA members are included - one targeted C-level executives, partners, managing partners, and human resource professionals and one went to staff-level accountants. 

The toolkit that accompanies the report offers strategies on how to build a diversity-focused culture, implement that strategy, support and retain new hires, and build the talent pool. Some of the recommendations include incorporating a diversity commitment into annual performance reviews, establishing a greater presence on campus or partnering with local colleges and universities, and mentoring inside the organization.

"Some firms believe they are too small or lack the resources necessary for a dedicated diversity effort", says Michael D. Colgan, PICPA's CEO and executive director. "They recognize the importance of diversity, but are challenged by how they can implement the strategy. This toolkit assists with the 'how.'"

The PICPA plans to share this report and toolkit with its membership along with other state CPA societies and diversity partners, including the National Association of Black Accountants (NABA); the Association of Latino Professionals in Finance and Accounting (ALPFA); and Ascend, a Pan-Asian professional association. There is also a series of workshops planned for PICPA members early next year.

The full report and toolkit can be found on the PICPA website. 

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Source: October 26, 2012, PICPA Press Release



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