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By: Billy Looper

January 11, 2018

Score 100 Points by Including LGBT-Owned Businesses in Your Supplier Diversity Initiative

The Human Rights Campaign Foundation (HRC) released a report that 609 businesses earned the top score of 100 from the Corporate Equality Index (CEI). This is an increase of 18 percent from the last year. Large corporations have made strides by including the LGBTQ community in their discrimination policies, supplier diversity, and benefits packages.

It's a big deal.

The CEI began in 2002 to measure the LGBTQ-inclusive policies and practices at Fortune 500 companies by pushing corporate leaders to step in playing a role in equality for all. CEI rated corporations have expanded their support for transgender employees. Today, 83 percent of Fortune 500 companies participate in non-discrimination protections that include gender identity.

Check out the full report here.

Aligning the LGBTQ Community with Supplier Diversity

Supplier diversity includes providing business opportunities to minority-owned, women-owned, veteran-owned and LGBT-owned companies. Over the past three decades, larger corporations are making it a part of their policies to include a supplier diversity strategy in their procurement departments.

Several organizations such as like the Women's Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) and the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) have made the initiative to give equal opportunities to minority-owned businesses, so they have a fair chance at competing with larger suppliers.

In 2004, the National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) was founded to certify LGBT businesses which have at least 51 percent LGBT ownership. Now LGBT businesses could be recognized for their minority status and participate in supplier diversity programs.

How does LGBT Supplier Diversity Apply to the CEI Report?

Even though companies continue to join the rest of the country by offering equal treatment to their employees regardless of race or sexual orientation, HRC wants to raise the bar. The HRC has acknowledged that those companies with a score of 100 have a supplier diversity program that includes working with LGBT businesses. This past year, CEI recognized those firms which included LGBT-owned businesses in their supplier diversity program in one of three efforts which include:

• Publicly listing and recognizing LGBTBE certification alongside other diverse communities
• Identifying a point person for supplier diversity/procurement to liaise with NGLCC and the LGBT business community
• Participating in programs/webinars with NGLCC local affiliate chambers across the United States.

To receive full credit in the 2019 report companies will have to include LGBTQ companies in their outreach efforts. If they are not, they will have five points deducted from their overall score. Outloud Strategies and Outloud Enterprises are renown suppliers who are NGLCC certified and will get a business to get a 100 percent score on next year's CEI report. The benefits of working with any minority-owned company include getting personalized attention because these organizations are vying to win over businesses with their work ethic and flexible offerings.

For the overall questionnaire on how your company can reach 100 points, click here.

Outloud Strategies and Outloud Enterprises are a certified LGBT Business Enterprise by the National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce and want to let the world know.

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