2022 Automotive Diversity Scorecard
The scorecard judged 12 automakers on their commitment to improving diversity in employment, advertising, marketing, procurement, dealers and philanthropy.
The organization, founded by the Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr., released the scorecard Monday during its Global Automotive Summit in Detroit. The group said it hopes several companies still lacking diversity, equity and inclusion officers follow through on plans to install them in the year ahead.
Automakers are scored as green, yellow or red. Green signals that a company is using best practices to build ethnic diversity and has shared its goals, initiatives and investments in this area. Yellow indicates diversity is evident, but not all dollar investments, key figures and other factors were disclosed.
Red means diversity initiatives were nonexistent or undisclosed, or that relevant information was not provided for scoring.
Toyota and GM each earned green ratings in five of the six categories. Toyota's lone yellow was in the dealers category, while GM was rated yellow in employment. Ford Motor Co., Stellantis, Honda Motor Co. and Nissan Motor Co. each collected four green marks and two yellows.
German automakers Volkswagen, Mercedes-Benz and BMW earned yellow ratings across the board.
There were no red marks this year, as all of the companies relayed plans on how they will address diversity and inclusion in the scorecard's categories, said John Graves, chairman of the Rainbow PUSH Automotive Project. But Graves said red ratings could reappear next year if the companies haven't made sufficient progress.
"Some companies are putting together a mechanic training program, so they're thinking outside of the box to try to do things to get rid of the red," Graves told Automotive News. "A couple companies that don't have the [diversity, equity and inclusion] personnel will have a head of DE&I by this time next year, so we're working together, we're working through that."
The industry has been making gains in numerous areas.
Automakers added 109 minority-owned dealerships in 2021, bringing the total to 1,366, the most since 2006. It was the industry's biggest one-year increase since 2012. GM had 303 minority dealers at the end of 2021 to lead the industry.
Stellantis teamed with the National Business League in 2021 to create the National Black Supplier Development Program, which is providing tutelage to executives at companies in and outside the auto industry to help build their brands and grow.
Graves said the coalition has an eye on the automakers' C-suites. He said it's critical that companies have a pipeline of diverse talent that are groomed for leadership positions when opportunities arise.
German automakers, which have historically fared poorly on the scorecard, are showing an eagerness to improve. Graves said he met recently with a regional vice president for BMW, and the coalition plans to meet with company leadership again soon to begin mapping out programs.
This is a stark shift from 2017, when Jackson called for a boycott of BMW after the automaker failed to complete the scorecard's survey. The coalition and BMW connected after that to discuss the company's minority dealer network and other diversification efforts.
Graves said a meeting with Mercedes leadership is in the offing as well.
The coalition will be monitoring automakers in the coming months and holding them accountable through the scorecard ratings if they don't execute on their diversity objectives, Graves said. He added that the coalition is looking at ways to evaluate the diversity efforts at Tier 1 suppliers and could release a report next year for that sector.
"The red [marks] really will have meaning if, this time next year, you're one of two companies with a red, then that's going to be part of the narrative, that's going to be part of the story if your procurement record is not inclusive," Graves said. "We've got to have reciprocal relationships with these companies."
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