Here are some useful, very practical, ideas that in-house counsel can quite easily implement to help improve diversity in the legal profession. It's a seemingly intractable problem that, therefore, has to be tackled in numerous ways. Every little helps, as the TV ads for a well known supermarket repeatedly tell us!
Recruitment: “Simply making sure that one minority candidate is interviewed per position....can result in much improved outcomes,” suggests Sullivan......this is ....the “ Rooney Rule” after Pittsburgh Steelers owner Dan Rooney, who requires minority candidates be interviewed for top positions. Track outside counsel: Sullivan says more than half of large legal departments are measuring the diversity of the external counsel they employ. But more can be done. “Tracking hours billed by diverse attorneys....can help corporate clients make sure that their outside counsel is diverse in practice, not just in its figureheads,” .... Focus on associates: It’s one thing for a firm to have diverse senior partners, but focusing on associates' contributions will institutionalize the support for diversity, both inside and outside of the organization.