Press Releases Archives - Diversity & Flexibility Alliance

Diversity & Flexibility Alliance Report Finds Slight Increase in Women Among Law Partner Classes

 

Increased Focus on Recruiting, Training,

Supporting and Advancing Women Is Critical

 

 Washington, DC – November 9, 2017 — The Diversity & Flexibility Alliance announced today that the percentage of women promoted to partnership in 2017 in the U.S. Offices of many of the nation’s largest and top-grossing law firms has reached a six-year high of 38.1 percent. The Alliance’s sixth-annual New Partner Report reveals that this year there was an increase of five percentage points since 2012 and one percentage point since 2016. This year also marks the largest share of firms (32.3%) with new partner classes consisting of at least 50 percent women.

The report emphasizes, however, that this increase is minor and law firms must take steps now to develop more young women attorneys and monitor the pipeline to make sure that women have access to the same training and opportunities to advance their careers as men.

“While we are optimistic that these results show that the industry is moving in the right direction when it comes to gender parity, the increase is too slow and firms must prepare for the future now if they want to remain competitive,” said Manar Morales, President and CEO of the Diversity & Flexibility Alliance. “It’s time that firms evolve with the times, understand the advantages of gender parity at the partner level, and take the steps necessary to retain and promote top female talent,” she added.

The Alliance recommends that law firms focus on:

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Survey Finds Positive Trends in Law Firm Flexibility, However Bias Continues to
Impede Usage

WASHINGTON, DC, March 22, 2017 — While the availability of flexible work arrangements has increased in law firms, new research released by the Diversity & Flexibility Alliance (“the Alliance”) suggests that not all lawyers and staff are using the policies. The third annual Law Firm Flexibility Benchmarking Survey, released today, examines the availability and usage of flexible work policies in large U.S. law firms.

The survey found that while 26 of 28 participating firms (93 percent) have a formal written flexible work policy, the attorney usage rates remain at or below 8.8 percent for reduced hours, flexible start and end times, telecommuting, annualized hours, and job sharing. Detailed information is available in the report’s Executive Summary.

“While we are optimistic about the growing number of major U.S. law firms that have a formal flexible work policy, the usage rates are a better indicator of a culture that truly supports flex,” said Manar Morales, President & CEO of the Diversity & Flexibility Alliance. “For a flexibility policy to be successful it must be de-gendered, de-parented, de-stigmatized, and integrated into the cultural norms of an organization. Otherwise many employees, diverse individuals in particular, often face bias and stigma related to working flexibly,” she added. “Our vision for the future is an industry where all professionals are comfortable working flexibly and are confident that they are not impeding their career by doing so.”

Some other highlights from the report include:

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Law Firm Partners Recognized For Remarkable Success While Working Flexible Schedules

Diversity & Flexibility Alliance to Present 2017 Flex Success Awards at Annual Conference

WASHINGTON, DC, February 27, 2017 — The Diversity and Flexibility Alliance announced its 2017 Flex Success™ Award Honorees: Felicia Gerber Perlman, Partner at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP and her client Charles Baker, Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary at Ball Corporation; and Phyllis Wan, Partner at Hogan Lovells US LLP and her client Carol McDaniel, Vice President of Administration and Operations at AXS TV LLC & HDNet Movies LLC.

The Flex Success™ Award recognizes partners at Diversity & Flexibility Alliance (the “Alliance”) member organizations who have achieved a high level of success while working a reduced hours schedule as well as a client who has been integral to making workplace flexibility so successful. The Awards will be presented on March 16, 2017 at the Alliance’s annual conference, Diversity + Flexibility = An Evolving Culture, in Washington, DC. Registration is available here.

“With support from their clients and firms, these two extraordinary attorneys are excelling in their careers, contributing to the success of their colleagues, and giving back to their communities, all while making time for their families and personal pursuits,” said Manar Morales, President and CEO of the Alliance. “It’s so important to celebrate these success stories and applaud the partners and clients who are successfully leading the cultural transformation of the industry.”

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Diversity & Flexibility Alliance To Recognize Booz Allen Hamilton Executive As Flex Leader

Award to be Presented at Annual Conference

WASHINGTON, DC, February 27, 2017 — The Diversity and Flexibility Alliance (the “Alliance”) today announced that Nancy Laben, Chief Legal Officer, Corporate Secretary and Executive Vice President of Booz Allen Hamilton will receive its 2017 Flex Leader Award. The Flex Leader Award recognizes an executive who is moving his or her organization toward a more inclusive workplace through holistic flexibility. The Award will be presented on March 16, 2017 at the Alliance’s annual conference, Diversity + Flexibility = An Evolving Culture, in Washington, DC. Registration is available here.

“We are proud to honor Nancy Laben as our 2017 Flex Leader for her tireless efforts to create a culture that truly supports flexible work at Booz Allen Hamilton,” said Manar Morales, President and CEO of the Diversity & Flexibility Alliance. “Nancy clearly leads by example as she works remotely, finds time for family, and has relocated to an office closer to her home to reduce commute time. More importantly, she offers her team the same opportunities to find balance in their schedules.”

Ms. Laben has been a strong supporter of a Booz Allen Hamilton program created to provide employees with greater flexibility in where, when, and how they work. The program was initiated about six years ago in response to the high level of traffic congestion in the Washington, DC area, combined with the desire to recruit and retain the best talent. Workspaces were redesigned to be a more collaborative space and employees are encouraged to limit their commute time and work from an office close to their homes when their client work allows. Flexible work schedules are encouraged, and it is a cultural norm in which flexible schedules are supported and not a detriment to employees’ careers.

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Diversity & Flexibility Alliance To Present Inaugural Flex Impact Awards

Hogan Lovells, Winston & Strawn Recognized for Impactful Flexibility Innovations

WASHINGTON, DC, February 27, 2017 — The Diversity & Flexibility Alliance (the “Alliance”) has announced it will present its inaugural Flex Impact Awards to law firms, Hogan Lovells US LLP, for its Agile Working Initiative, and Winston & Strawn LLP, for its new gender-neutral Parental Leave Policy.

The Flex Impact Award recognizes policies or initiatives that are poised to have a significant impact on the culture of flexibility in an organization or industry through positive change in the workplace, the success of the business, and/or the recruitment and retention of talent. The Awards will be received by Eve Howard, Regional Managing Partner for Hogan Lovells’ Washington, D.C. Region, and Linda Coberly, Managing Partner of Winston & Strawn’s Chicago office, at the Alliance’s annual conference, Diversity + Flexibility = An Evolving Culture, on March 16 in Washington, DC. Both award recipients will sit on the panel, “Cultural Innovations with Impact” and describe their firms’ initiatives, including the research, implementation, challenges and outcomes. Registration for the conference is available here.

“These initiatives not only benefit the firms where they are implemented, but they will truly impact the entire industry,” said Manar Morales, President and CEO of the Diversity & Flexibility Alliance. “These firms are pioneering new approaches to flexibility, and in so doing, enhancing the well-being of their employees, improving the recruitment and retention of talent, and boosting their business success.”

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KPMG Global Chairman to Deliver Diversity & Flexibility Alliance Keynote

Conference To Highlight the Evolving Culture of Flexibility & Diversity

WASHINGTON, DC, February 27, 2017 — The Diversity & Flexibility Alliance has announced that KPMG Global Chairman John Veihmeyer will deliver the keynote address at its annual conference, Diversity + Flexibility = An Evolving Culture, in Washington, DC on March 16, 2017. The one-day conference will also feature executives from Verizon, Booz Allen Hamilton, Walmart, Morgan Stanley, and several prominent law firms who will share their best practices for embracing diversity and flexibility and the value they bring to their organizations. Human Resources executives, Diversity & Inclusion professionals, management, and anyone interested in learning more about the benefits of diversity and flexibility are invited to attend. More information and registration details can be found here.

“Our annual conference brings together professionals from the legal, corporate, financial, and consulting industries who share advice on flexibility and diversity initiatives,” said Manar Morales, President & CEO of the Diversity & Flexibility Alliance. “We are proud to welcome John Veihmeyer and other leaders who are trendsetters in diversity and flexibility and are integral to this evolution of cultural change in the workplace.”

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Thirty-Seven Percent of New Law Firm Partners Are Women; Diversity & Flexibility Alliance’s Report Finds Steady Increase

Metrics Crucial to Continued Progress

WASHINGTON, DC, November 3, 2016 — The Diversity & Flexibility Alliance announced today that the percentage of women promoted to partnership in 2016 in the U.S. offices of many of the nation’s largest law firms has reached a five-year high of 37.3 percent. This number has steadily increased from 33 percent in 2012, aside from a one-year dip to 32 percent in 2014, and is up nearly 3 percentage points from 34.4 percent last year. The Alliance’s 2016 New Partner Report noted that Diversity & Flexibility Alliance member firms continued to outpace the national average with 38.3 percent of attorneys promoted to partnership being women.

“While law firms still have a long way to go before women have an equal place in leadership, we are seeing some positive trends in the overall percentage of women being promoted to partnership in 2016,” said Manar Morales, President and CEO of the Diversity & Flexibility Alliance. “It is imperative that firms support and develop female talent by providing them opportunities to advance their careers, and creating an inclusive culture where women can advance to leadership positions,” she added. “We believe that it is crucial that we monitor and report this data so that our members and others in the industry are aware of the progress made and continue to explore opportunities that advance women in the profession. We are extremely proud that our member firms understand these opportunities and continue to outpace the national average for promoting women to partner.”

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Major Law Firms Urged to Participate in Flexibility Benchmarking Survey

Flexible Work Key to Meeting Needs of Future Employees & Evolution of Legal Industry

WASHINGTON, DC, July 28, 2016 — The Diversity & Flexibility Alliance is urging all major U.S. law firms to participate in its third annual Law Firm Flexibility Benchmarking Survey, which is open for participation through September 12, 2016. The survey provides major U.S. law firms with the opportunity to track the availability, usage, and support of their flexible work programs. A touchstone on the current state of flexibility in the industry, this survey has the market distinction of examining holistic flexible work usage including reduced hours schedules, telecommuting, flexible start/end times, annualized hours and/or job sharing by attorney position, gender, race, and sexual orientation in a way that protects the confidentiality of participants and does not result in a ranked list.

“Law firms that participate in our survey will receive invaluable information and insights into the effectiveness of their flexible work policies, the biases that may be present in their firm and how they stack up against the rest of the industry,” said Manar Morales, President and CEO of the Diversity & Flexibility Alliance. “Since flexibility is an important talent recruitment and retention tool, firms must evolve and seriously consider whether their flexible work policies are meeting the needs of their current and future employees,” she added.

All survey participants will receive the full 2016 Law Firm Flexibility Benchmarking Survey Report, featuring findings from the aggregated survey results. The Executive Summary for the 2015 Law Firm Flexibility Benchmarking Survey Report is available on the Research page of the Alliance’s website. All responses are kept confidential and the report will only include aggregate data. Individualized benchmarking reports, which include customized recommendations, are available for purchase by participant firms.

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Davis Wright Tremaine Partners Recognized For Remarkable Success While Working Flexible Schedules

The Diversity & Flexibility Alliance to Present 2016 Flex Success™ Awards at Annual Conference

WASHINGTON, DC: March 7, 2016 – The Diversity and Flexibility Alliance has announced its 2016 Flex Success™ Award Honorees, Jenna Mooney and Danielle Frappier, both Partners at Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, and their clients, Joe Mattoon, Chief Legal Officer, CLEAResult Consulting Inc., and Steven Fenker, President, Nexus Communications, Inc., respectively. The awards, which will be presented at the Alliance’s Annual Conference, recognize partners at member organizations who are currently on a reduced hours schedule and a client that has been integral to making workplace flexibility a reality and a success.

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J. Stephen Poor Recognized As An Innovative Trailblazer In Workplace Flexibility

Chairman of Seyfarth Shaw is the Diversity & Flexibility Alliance’s 2016 Flex Leader Honoree

WASHINGTON, DC: February 23, 2016 – The Diversity & Flexibility Alliance announced today that J. Stephen Poor, Chairman of Seyfarth Shaw LLP, will be its 2016 Flex Leader Award Honoree.  The award, which will be presented at the Alliance’s Annual Conference on March 16, 2016, is given to a General Counsel or law firm Chair who promotes a more diverse and inclusive workplace through holistic flexibility.

Mr. Poor is being recognized for his demonstrated leadership, dedication and tireless efforts to ensuring that flexibility policies at Seyfarth Shaw are a part of the firm’s culture. “Steve truly understands the importance of incorporating flexible work policies into the culture of his firm as a valuable business component as well as a key talent retention tool,” said Manar Morales, President and CEO of the Diversity & Flexibility Alliance. “Steve is a trailblazer in the field and demonstrates true leadership from the top to ensure that all of his offices understand and embrace the importance of diversity and flexibility,” she added.

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