The second wave of the Global Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Census reveals that, despite acknowledgment of industry efforts, there is no significant improvement in inclusion within the global marketing industry since 2021. According to the 2023 Global DEI Census, nearly one in seven members of the industry consider leaving due to lack of diversity, equity, and inclusion. This sentiment is stronger among certain groups, with almost one in six women, one in six LGBQ+, more than one in five ethnic minorities, and almost one in four disabled respondents likely to leave.
The survey reveals that 72% of respondents globally recognize attempts to improve diversity, equity, and inclusion. The acknowledgment peaks in Canada, the USA, and Singapore, but significantly lower in Japan, Slovenia, and Poland. However, the overall inclusion scores remain the same as in 2021. The DEI inclusion index, based on a respondent’s sense of well-being, absence of discrimination, and presence of negative behaviors, stands at 63%, unchanged from 2021.
Discrimination based on age, gender, and family status continues to be a pressing issue. For instance, 41% of women, 42% of parents, and 39% of caregivers feel that family responsibilities hinder career progress. Women, LGBQ+, ethnic minorities, and disabled respondents reported having worse experiences compared to their counterparts. For example, disabled respondents reported the worst work experiences with an inclusion index score of 45%, compared to 67% for non-disabled respondents.
Underrepresentation in senior positions is reported among women and ethnic minorities. Women dominate junior positions (64% women vs. 36% men) while men are twice as likely to occupy C-suite positions (21% men vs. 11% women).
Mental health remains a concern, with 42% of respondents reporting feelings of stress and anxiety at work. Nearly half of the respondents feel that promotion or hiring decisions can be discriminatory. Key groups, particularly women, ethnic minorities, LGBQ+, and disabled respondents, are less likely to see people like them in senior positions, indicating a lack of role models.
The 2023 Global DEI Census, supported by a coalition of global marketing and advertising organizations and leading companies, is based on nearly 13,000 responses from 91 countries. The data will be used to update country-specific action plans and focus resources on the most pressing local challenges.
Industry leaders urge the marketing community to move beyond rhetoric and take positive steps to create a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive environment for all. They call for consistent actions and accountability to address the deep-rooted and systemic challenges in diversity, equity, and inclusion.