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In brief: A way to measure diversity

At the 20 largest private credit firms, fewer than 4% of investment or distribution professionals identify as either Black or Latinx, says executive search firm Jensen Partners.

Jensen Partners, an executive search firm focused on the alternatives space, has launched a software platform to “quantify, measure, report and improve workforce diversity and inclusion,” the firm said in a statement on Monday.

The firm said the software, called DiversityMetrics, uses both qualitative and quantitative data to show “how each alternative investment firm stacks up against key diversity objectives.” The quant data includes self-reported and third-party data on racial and gender diversity of each investment and distribution professional in the firm’s database of more than 25,000 people, it says. The qualitative data inputs include anonymised survey data and employee assessments.

The firm uses the data to create the “JP Diversity Index,” a scoring system that tells managers “where they are in their DEI journey based on intersectional factors such as rate of seniority of women and people of color, rate of retention, promotion rate and the structure of the DEI team.”

What has Jensen Partners found out so far?

Only one in four investment or distribution professionals at the 20 largest private credit firms identify as women, and only one in five identifies as a person of colour. 1.2 percent of front-office credit professionals identify as Black and 1.9 percent identify as Hispanic/Latinx.

Among the 45 largest private equity firms, 2.5 percent of the distribution professionals identified as Black and only 2.8 percent identified as Hispanic/Latinx.

Said Sasha Jensen, founder of the firm: “Asset managers have repeatedly made commitments to improve workforce diversity and inclusion, yet there still has not been meaningful progress.”