What is the Vital Signs tool?
Vital Signs is Catalyst’s foundational methodology for understanding your workforce through a diversity and inclusion lens. While your company may intend to have an equitable and inclusive workplace, the reality is commonly at odds with those intentions. Vital Signs helps you measure your organization’s reality so that you can identify patterns behind the evaluation and progression of talent in your organization.
With Vital Signs, you will learn to graphically display the patterns of decisions by level so that disparities can be easily identified, investigated, addressed, and monitored. Through your usage of Vital Signs, you will be able to tell the story of your talent pipeline using workforce data to illuminate historical patterns, track patterns, and inform future talent decisions.
What does Vital Signs measure?
- Representation: How diverse is your organization at various levels? Are there specific levels that are more or less diverse than others?
- Hiring: Is your organization hiring talent that is at least as diverse as current employees at each level?
- Promotions: Who is chosen for development opportunities and advancement at your organization? Are all employee groups moving proportionately through the ranks? At the end of the year, have your individual talent decisions resulted in promotion patterns at equitable rates?
- Voluntary Turnover: Who chooses to leave your organization and why do they choose to leave? How does this vary by level?
- Involuntary Turnover: Who does your organization ask to leave and why? Are there disparities among groups? What else could be contributing to underperformance or perceived underperformance?
- Key Metrics Comparison: How do the above measures come together and result in changes to representation over the course of a year?
Reports and numbers alone don’t generate change or provide you with the insights that have impact. Identifying gaps and pinpointing areas of opportunity are critical to maximizing the potential of your entire workforce. This tool uses a step-by-step, guided approach to show you how to apply a diversity lens to your workforce data.
This Practice walks you through an example of a completed Vital Signs analysis. This example will show you how to orient, display and interpret your data to analyze recurring trends and drop-offs in the pipeline to leadership.
This Data Collection Template is an Excel file with embedded formulas. As you input workforce data, the template automatically calculates proportions and rates needed for graphs and/or charts.
The figures and tables from Vital Signs: Using Your Data to Close the Gaps are all available in this Microsoft Office PowerPoint file so that you can customize our charts with your organization’s data.