All About Insight Into Diversity’s HEED Award

Diverse workers in higher education setting winning HEED Award

Supplier diversity is a priority for procurement departments in higher education. Doing business with historically disadvantaged businesses is a wonderful way for an academic institution to give back to the surrounding community. Not to mention, it promotes healthy competition.

Card Integrity has spent a lot of time talking about supplier diversity initiatives in procurement. We aren’t the only ones, of course. Insight Into Diversity is the leading publication for DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) in higher education. In addition to their periodical which garners over 750,000 viewers each month, Insight Into Diversity also awards institutions the HEED Award on a yearly basis. The HEED Award, HEED standing for Higher Education Excellence in Diversity, is awarded to institutions of higher education that demonstrate “an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion” not just in their supplier relationships, but as a whole.

Regarding supplier relationships on their own, Insight into Diversity published an interview specifically about the subject. Among the topics discussed are supplier diversity trends, supply chain gaps, and advice for colleges or universities with limited procurement staff.

Obtaining the HEED Award

All baccalaureate-granting colleges and universities in the United States and Canada are eligible to apply. Applying is free. The HEED Award application takes a comprehensive look at the institution from top to bottom, taking everything into account, from employment to admissions to, of course, supplier relationships. According to Insight into Diversity’s webpage about the application process, the goal is to “is to help institutions of higher education assess their diversity efforts in order to build on their success and improve where necessary”.

Why to Pursue the HEED Award

The HEED Award signals that your organization is invested in DEI in the present as well as into the future. It serves as a great self-auditing tactic or benchmarking tool, to see areas where you can improve. You can also use it as a springboard for future DEI conversations, program development, and strategic planning. Insight into Diversity put together a great resource page listing out ten different reasons why pursuing the HEED Award may be worth it for your organization. The award is also the only one of its kind—it’s the only national award that honors an academic institution’s commitment to making diversity and inclusion a priority.

If you’re interested in applying, you can start the process on Insight into Diversity’s site at this link. The deadline for 2024 is June 28, 2024. Award winners are announced in the November/December issue of Insight into Diversity.

How You Can Up Your Supplier Diversity Game

As we mentioned, the HEED Award takes into account every aspect of organizational diversity from top to bottom, including student body, faculty, etc. But supplier diversity is a large piece of the puzzle.

You may also be looking to ensure compliance with a local or national jurisdiction on supplier diversity spend, such as HUB or DBE. (What are they, and what’s the difference? We have a blog post about that.) Card Integrity can help with all of these supplier diversity initiatives. In fact, several of 2023’s HEED Award winners are Card Integrity clients.

Through Card Integrity’s DataWISE service, you can keep track of and benchmark your supplier diversity initiatives and spend. With DataWISE you can:

  • Track spend across different departments. This gives you a bigger picture of where specific improvements can be made within your entire organizational spend.
  • Visualize the data in a way that is easy to understand. This way you can easily share key insights with stakeholders and management.
  • Define benchmarks and compare running data against them. Whether your benchmarks are defined internally or mandated outside your organization, customize your reporting to show if you are meeting those goals, and where you can improve.
  • Visualize spend trends month-over-month to show how your supplier diversity spend ebbs and flows throughout the year.
  • Breakout specific details of your supplier diversity spend, for example what percentage of your DBE or HUB spend is women-owned, minority-owned, etc.
DBE spend trends dummy data
An example of supplier diversity spend trends. Source: Card Integrity. Note: This data is illustrative and not representative of any real client.

Increasing supplier diversity is an honorable goal, and it requires a lot of time and effort. Card Integrity can make the process easier. Fill out the form below to access a free demo to see how we can help you.

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