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How to create an Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Plan

Explore this guide to understand what could be incorporated into an EDI plan in an organization like yours.

Please note that this guide is provided for information purposes only. For example, you may wish to adopt a phased approach and prioritize certain sections based on your context, organizational resources and consultations with your staff.

Find out more about Equity, Diversity and Inclusion: Levers for Your Growth.

In this guide

  1. Vision statement
  2. Priorities, objectives and activities
  3. Roles and responsibilities
  4. Communication strategy
  5. Plan monitoring: Targets, indicators and timelines
Pro Tip: Complete an EDI Diagnosis for a Plan Better Suited to Your Needs

The objective of the diagnosis is to pinpoint EDI issues specific to your organization or sector of activity, including key challenges and opportunities. It therefore makes it possible to identify opportunities to take concrete actions tailored to your needs.

Ideally, the diagnosis is conducted prior to defining your organization’s EDI needs and the measures to be put in place.

See the four steps to follow when integrating EDI into your organization

1. Vision statement

Develop the EDI policy, vision, mission or values statement that will guide your actions. To foster internal buy-in and awareness, many organizations develop this statement in collaboration with their staff.


“In our organization, it is imperative that all people be treated with dignity and respect, regardless of their differences.

We recognize that a diversity of identities and perspectives can foster creativity, innovation, and success in our organization. This is why our work environment is inclusive: All individuals are valued, supported, and can reach their full potential.”

2. Priorities, objectives and activities

Establish your priorities relating to the EDI issues identified.

For each priority, set objectives and list activities that will help achieve them.

For example:

Management priority: Personnel recruitment and retention

Objective: Diversify the composition of the board of directors or management team to enrich perspectives, insights, risk management and decision-making; improve the organization’s image; and attract more diverse talent.

Examples of activities:

  • Provide recruitment staff with training on how to counter unconscious bias.
  • Train staff from under-represented groups for management or administrative positions.
  • Regularly monitor the hiring of staff from under‑represented groups (for example, percentage of diverse staff in the management team).
Management priority: Inclusive organizational culture

Objective: Value cultural competencies and increase awareness of unconscious biases in organizational activities.

Examples of activities:

  • Adopt policies that help embed EDI into the organization’s values (for example, policies on recruitment, combating all forms of harassment or discrimination, valuing and managing diversity).
  • Prepare a webinar or training workshop on the benefits of EDI (for example, inclusive leadership, inclusive communication or communication focused on cultural skills development).
  • Organize conferences or publish testimonials on the issues facing individuals from under-represented groups.
  • Create opportunities to discuss EDI with staff.
Management priority: Employee training and development

Objective: Create mentoring opportunities and professional development plans that address challenges faced by individuals from under-represented groups.

Examples of activities:

  • Implement an onboarding process for new employees.
  • Implement a mentoring or sponsorship program for individuals from under-represented groups.
  • Dedicate a member of the Human Resources team as an EDI resource person.
  • Hold managers accountable for the achievement of this objective.

3. Roles and responsibilities

Define the roles and responsibilities for implementing your organization's EDI plan. For example, you could:

  • Appoint a resource person to promote EDI within the organization;
  • Assign responsibility to managers for achieving EDI objectives;
  • Establish an internal governance mechanism, for example, by putting in place a committee to monitor EDI progress;
  • Establish a formal process to combat discrimination and harassment.

4. Communication strategy

Determine how the plan will be communicated internally and, if appropriate, externally. Your strategy could include:

  • Sharing data and positive information with staff on progress on EDI issues (for example, a periodic bulletin);
  • Promoting EDI in employer messages and branding to better reach, attract and retain talented people from under-represented groups or a diverse clientele (for example, diffusion of information briefs and use of gender-neutral writing).

5. Plan monitoring: Targets, indicators and timelines

Define how to track your EDI plan, including setting targets, indicators, and timelines for each objective and activity.

EDI targets

Make it possible to specify the desired improvement over a target period.

For example, increase the proportion of staff from under-represented groups from 5% to 10% within 5 years.

EDI indicators

Help measure the achieved result and compare it with the target to assess progress towards achieving the objective.

For instance, at the end of each fiscal year, data compiled on the proportion of staff from under-represented groups will help assess the achievement of the objective.

Finally, a calendar of activities, including their completion period, will help to better identify the efforts and resources that need to be mobilized to implement your EDI action plan. Depending on whether the objectives are met, you may be able to adjust or add additional measures.

How to Ensure Monitoring and Continuous Improvement of Your EDI Practices
  • Regularly review or report on your EDI indicators and objectives.
  • Gather feedback from staff on an ongoing basis.
  • Share knowledge and best practices with other organizations or businesses implementing EDI practices.

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