Swift Bunny, providers of Ingage by Swift Bunny™, the apartment industry’s first event-triggered, year-round employee lifecycle feedback system, released the Multifamily Diversity and Inclusion Study. The study summarizes the results of the Swift Bunny Multifamily Diversity and Inclusion Employee Survey conducted this autumn to enable multifamily owners and operators to improve understanding in their organizations and open the lines of communication surrounding these very important issues. 14 management companies and more than 2,100 multifamily employees participated. The portfolios ranged in size from 900 units to more than 100,000 units and represent all 50 states. The survey gathered employee perceptions on company commitment to diversity, respect of differences, equal treatment, inclusive work environment, and overall understanding of diversity and inclusion concerns. The Multifamily Diversity and Inclusion Study provides the rental housing industry’s first industry-specific data set on this topic.
Survey topics were positive statements and employees were asked how much they agreed with each as well as how important the topic was to them. The results of the two-dimensional survey approach reveal both successes and opportunities for apartment industry leadership. On a positive note, 82% of respondents agree their supervisors create inclusive work environments. Said one respondent, “(Our company) fosters a company culture where every voice is welcome, heard, and respected.” However, respondents feel less optimistic about their ability to express differing points of view without fear of negative consequences. In fact, 10% said they did not feel they were able to speak candidly, and 1 in 5 respondents was not willing to agree or disagree with this statement, which in itself indicates hesitancy in freely expressing a point of view. One respondent said this, “(I would) rather not answer, for fear of termination of employment.” The responses to this question indicate that there is significant opportunity to evaluate how open multifamily leaders are to different ideas, solutions, approaches, and experiences.
Doug Miller, Swift Bunny’s Chief Research Officer, remarked, “Employees are watching their leaders closely. It’s critically important that companies are not perceived as simply paying lip-service to the very important concerns around diversity, equity, and inclusion but rather are committed to positive change based on employee feedback.” Added Jen Piccotti, Swift Bunny’s Chief Learning Officer, “The participating companies can be proud of being a part of this important conversation with their employees. At the same time, there are many opportunities for our industry to support the creation and improvement of dialogue, training, and resources needed to elevate the diversity, equity, and inclusion for all multifamily employees.”
Swift Bunny’s leadership team will conduct a panel discussion of the study’s results in a complimentary webinar on Thursday, December 10, 2020, at 9 AM PT / 12 PM ET. Registration information can be found here.