Wal-Mart recently broke new ground by posting its entire EEO-1 report on the company's Web site. An article by SocialFunds.com reports that Wal-Mart’s public disclosure came in response to a shareowner resolution filed by members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility, a coalition of 275 faith-based institutional investors with combined portfolios worth an estimated $110 billion. The coalition withdrew its resolution in recognition of Wal-Mart taking this step.
Few Companies Publicly Release EEO-1 Data
Wal-Mart’s decision to publicly release its EEO-1 report is unusual. According to a December 2005 report by the Social Investment Research Analyst Network (SIRAN), Wal-Mart joins only six other companies in the S&P 100 index that publicly disclose their entire EEO-1 report. SIRAN is an analyst network that supports more than 100 North American social investment research analysts from 30 investment firms, research providers, and affiliated investor groups.
The companies SIRAN cited in its report for disclosing full EEO-1 data include Citigroup, Coca-Cola, Hewlett-Packard, Intel, IBM, and Merck. SIRAN states that another 21 companies provide full EEO-1 disclosure on request from analysts, and another six beyond that provide partial public disclosure.
Why the Interest in EEO-1 Data?
SIRAN believes EEO-1 information is an excellent reference for analysts to observe a company’s progress on hiring, promoting and retaining minority and female employees over time. As corporate workplaces become more diverse, equal employment opportunity is an increasingly important issue for shareholders, employees, and managements. SIRAN believes that releasing EEO-1 data strengthens a company and is in the best interests of its shareholders.
Do you think companies should make their EEO-1 reports publicly available? Why or why not? Post your response (anonymously if you like) in the comment section below.