By Bryan OchallaAllstate Insurance Co. has been addressing diversity—in the communities in which it operates as well as within the workplace—for decades. Long before Anise D. Wiley-Little became the Northbrook, Ill.-based insurance carrier’s first chief diversity officer in 2006, for instance, it displayed its commitment to diversity by embracing the notion of corporate social responsibility and supporting a number of civil-rights organizations. Allstate formalized its diversity efforts in the 1990s by implementing a diversity department.
This long-term commitment is just one reason Wiley-Little made a smooth transition from working in the company’s compensation department to leading its diversity efforts.
As Allstate’s CDO, Wiley-Little has developed and implemented “the framework for espousing our company’s people values as it relates to corporate diversity. This not only includes workforce diversity, but the accountability for integrating, strengthening and expanding diversity in all areas of the company.”
Wiley-Little also oversees Allstate’s supplier-diversity program. “We actively seek out diverse suppliers for procurement opportunities, and we work to develop partnerships with small and diverse businesses to help support their growth and prosperity,” she explains. Last year alone, the company channeled more than $200 million to nearly 2,600 minority- and women-owned business enterprises nationwide. And, says Wiley-Little, “we’re committed to increasing our efforts in that area even more.”
That was evident this past February, when Allstate held its inaugural Supplier Diversity Exchange, a networking event that drew more than 70 diverse suppliers, representatives from 45 outside companies, more than 200 Allstate employees and Rev. Jesse Jackson. “The exchange helped introduce Allstate employees in charge of purchasing decisions to the products and skills offered by diverse suppliers,” Wiley-Little says of the event, which she hopes is the first of many that will economically empower the communities where Allstate does business. (DiversityInc, Jul. 2008)URL: View Published Article
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