SEIA's DEIJ certification program for the solar industry
As consumer expectations change, it's on businesses to change with them. Many customers want to know that the companies they're supporting are trying to make the world more equitable, and expectations around corporate social responsibility are higher than ever.
To be successful in this evolving marketplace, businesses need to meet customer demand for action with serious commitments. That means it's time for companies to prioritize essential issues such as diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice (DEIJ) to create a more inclusive work environment, serve their communities, and hire diverse talent.
As the national trade association for America's solar and storage industry, the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) provides companies with the resources they need to advance diversity practices within their business. This starts with SEIA's DEIJ Certification Program, a first-of-its-kind online certification program that rewards energy companies for their actions to put DEIJ's best practices in place.
The program is designed to meet companies where they're at on diversity and can help companies that are just starting and others that are more advanced. Beginners can expect to tackle the basics, like creating a company statement on diversity and ensuring hiring practices comply with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission guidelines. More advanced companies that already have diversity programs in place can use SEIA's program to validate current practices, helping to add credibility to their brand.
Numerous studies show that companies with more diverse teams are more successful. And for solar companies, the importance of diversity extends beyond the workforce and their customer base. For the solar industry to achieve its goal of producing 30% of all U.S. electricity by 2030, solar adoption needs to grow in every community across America. That work starts with a solid commitment to a DEIJ at every solar company.
SEIA's certification program provides tools and guidance for companies as they analyze their DEIJ practices and implement proven workplace solutions. Through webinars, educational tools, resource guides, and templates, SEIA offers businesses access to high-quality DEIJ resources developed by Certified Diversity Professionals, human resource experts , and energy company executives. In addition to the online elements of the program, Certified Diversity Professionals will be monitoring company activity, offering support and feedback when a company submits a module, reviewing and scoring materials that companies submit, and hosting webinars for participants.
As companies progress, they will be awarded Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Platinum certification, helping them demonstrate to customers and stakeholders how the company is prioritizing diversity.
SEIA established this program after releasing the Diversity Best Practices Guide and discovering that many solar businesses lacked the resources to implement these best practices. DEIJ consultants and services are in high demand. They can be cost-prohibitive for under-resourced companies, making the certification program a valuable resource to the thousands of small businesses operating in the clean energy industry.
More than 70% of consumers have little faith that brands will deliver on their corporate social responsibility promises. That's unsurprising, given that a pledge to act is not guaranteed.
The certification program allows companies to move beyond conversations about diversity and onto a path of action and verifiable progress. The program adds a level of accountability and quality control that's often missing in pledges and aspirational statements, helping companies live up to the expectations they set. Achieving SEIA's DEIJ certification indicates that a company is committed to the issues its customers care about.
Solar is poised for historic growth, and industry leaders have a responsibility and a business motivation to ensure the opportunities they create uplift people of all backgrounds. The DEIJ Certification Program is a crucial piece to achieving that vision.
Can we count on your company to join us? Learn more by visiting SEIA's online learning center.