Interpublic Annual Climate for Inclusion Survey


IPG needed a quantitative and actionable approach to measure behaviors and outcomes associated with D&I efforts at its agencies. The issues included the need for tangible metrics for allocating agencies’ CEOs bonus earnings, validation of activities across a dispersed network of brands and offices, identification of pain points for different demographic groups and capturing feedback to inform targeted interventions.


In 2010, IPG launched the Climate for Inclusion survey in the US.

Conducted by an independent third party, the survey allows employees to anonymously self-identify according to various dimensions of diversity and to rate their leaders’ and agencies’ performance in key areas that map to IPG’s D&I strategy. CEOs’ goals are to score majority favorable ratings across all groups with respect to the statement “My agency/company is a top place for diversity and inclusion.” The survey addresses five theme areas: leadership and accountability, communications and education, fairness and respect, and people processes. Based on results for the overall themes and individual survey items, organizations can take very specific actions to drive improvements in a highly targeted way.

Implementation is supported with all-employee communications from IPG’s Chairman and CEO Michael Roth and with with follow-up from agency leadership. The Global D&I Group provides tool kits for implementation as well as recommendations for actions to address problematic results. IPG hosts webinars for HR as well as for employees who have questions about the survey.

Results are shared with stakeholders including IPG’s executive team, agency CEOs, agency talent officers and IPG’s Board of Directors. Comments are referred for investigation as required.


Since the implementation of the survey, the response rate averages around 75%. Annual objectives for agencies are calibrated to align with identified issues and each organization can follow their own trends. Correlation analyses have been used to help target key items that drive favorable results overall, for the general employee population as well as for isolated groups.


Heide Gardner


We are proud to be a part of the CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion™. The sheer power of so many influential business leaders coming together to reaffirm and step up their commitments to inclusion at this pivotal time is monumental. The potential for progress as we move forward in unity is compelling and can lead to transformational change.

Michael Roth
Chairman and CEO of Interpublic Group
Was this action helpful?