The Difference Between Diversity, Equity & Inclusion & Supplier Diversity Michelle Le September 24, 2023

The Difference Between Diversity, Equity & Inclusion & Supplier Diversity

Not sure what the difference is between Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) and Supplier Diversity? Aren’t they the same thing?

DEI and Supplier Diversity are related concepts, but they are not the same thing. Here are the major differences:

1. Scope: DEI is a broad concept that covers a range of diversity-related issues within an organization, such as hiring practices, workplace culture, and employee development. Supplier Diversity, on the other hand, specifically focuses on creating supply chain opportunities for small and diverse businesses to compete for contracts and do business with larger corporations.

2. Objectives: DEI aims to create a workplace culture that is inclusive and respectful of all employees, regardless of their race, ethnicity, gender, or other characteristics. It aims to ensure that everyone feels valued and has equal opportunities to succeed. Supplier Diversity, on the other hand, aims to create supply chain parity by promoting economic growth and job creation within diverse communities and by providing opportunities for small and diverse businesses to compete for contracts.

3. Strategies: DEI strategies may include training and education programs, policies to eliminate bias in hiring and promotion, and creating a workplace culture that celebrates diversity. Supplier Diversity strategies may include setting goals for diverse supplier spend, making outreach to diverse suppliers, developing diverse suppliers, and partnering with diverse suppliers to generate revenues.

While DEI and Supplier Diversity have different focuses, they are both important for creating a more inclusive and equitable society. By working together, they can help create opportunities for underrepresented communities through job creation and promote social and economic progress. Supplier diversity programs can be an important part of a company’s overall DEI strategy by creating opportunities for underrepresented groups.

To learn more about DEI and Supplier Diversity, here are some resources:

• Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Resource Center by SHRM:

• Supplier Diversity Resource Center by the National LGBT Chamber of Commerce:

• The Business Case for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion from McKinsey & Company:

• The Business Case for Supplier Diversity by the National Minority Supplier Development Council: