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Diversity Officer: Job Description, Duties and Requirements

Learn about the education and preparation needed to become a diversity officer. Get a quick view of the requirements as well as details about schooling, job duties and certification information to find out if this is the career for you.

Diversity officers handle issues of minority inclusion at schools, businesses or corporations, and are responsible for knowing requirements and regulations regarding affirmative action. A bachelor's degree is usually required by employers looking to hire diversity officers.

Essential Information

Diversity officers work at universities, businesses and other institutions, helping to maintain and advocate for a diverse population within the organization. Their job often entails ensuring that the school or company conforms to government affirmative action regulations. Review the following information to find out about preparation for this career and employment statistics:

Required Education A bachelor's degree with coursework in business administration, human resources or cultural diversity
Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)* 3% (for compliance officers)
Median Annual Salary (May 2015)* $65,640 (for compliance officers)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Job Description

A diversity officer might be asked to assess an organization's current representation of minorities and make a plan to increase the amount of students or employees from protected classes. This might be done to meet federal affirmative action requirements or to satisfy an institutional policy.

The diversity officer also might work with members of an organization's minority population, addressing their concerns and meeting their specific needs. Sometimes, a diversity officer will be called on to coach the entire population of a business or college on inclusiveness. He or she also might work with small groups of students with diversity issues.

Duties

Diversity officers are required to keep up on current equal opportunity and affirmative action regulations, as well as common non-discrimination policy. These officers are often expected to be versatile employees, functioning with skills in areas such as human resources, administration and management. Diversity officers might need to mitigate diversity-based disputes and accusations of discrimination against the organization or other employees.

Other duties could include the creation and promotion of diversity-oriented events, minority and protected class inclusion programs and cross-cultural workshops. Occasionally, these officers are called on to produce best practices in diversity material, promoting inclusiveness and ensuring continued compliance with government regulations.

Requirements

In most cases, a diversity officer is required to hold at least a bachelor's degree. Possible undergraduate degree programs or classes include business administration, human resources and cultural diversity. Classes in cultural diversity might teach students to function within a diverse workforce and to promote cultural inclusion in a variety of professional environments.

Some schools offer postgraduate certificate programs in diversity. Students might learn about progressive diversity strategy and the use of inclusiveness to produce organizational growth and success.

Diversity officers are responsible for representing and protecting the rights of minority groups in the work place. They should hold a bachelor's degree and have some experience and training in cultural diversity, as well as human resource management and business. Job growth for compliance officers, including those who work on diversity issues, is predicted to be slower than average through the year 2024.


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