Embracing and encouraging diversity and inclusion in the workforce is more important than ever as companies can no longer ignore the advantages a diverse workforce brings. However, to create a truly diverse workforce, diversity initiatives must also extend to a company’s leadership team.

A 2019 study from McKinsey & Co. found that companies in the top quartile for gender diversity on their executive teams were 25% more likely to achieve above-average profitability than those in the bottom quartile, up from 15% in 2014. The likelihood of outperformance is even greater for companies with greater ethnic diversity within their executive teams. New York City-based AboveBoard offers a solution to those looking to reach the top quartile by opening the door to thousands of historically excluded candidates.

While executive recruitment is normally a secretive process that relies heavily on personal connections, Above- Board is pulling the curtain back and giving more people an opportunity to throw their hat in the ring. Not only does AboveBoard help candidates access more openings, but companies get access to a larger pool of candidates at cost-effective rates, making it a win-win for all parties. These advantages have caught the attention of many companies, large and small. Since launching in October 2020 with over 350 senior-level openings and 1,000 members, AboveBoard now hosts over 600 openings from more than 400 companies and is used by over 8,000 top professionals.

AboveBoard only accepts professionals who have VP-level experience to ensure candidates are qualified for the positions on its job board. Interested applicants can create a free profile in a few minutes and begin browsing opportunities after being qualified by AboveBoard. To apply for an opening, applicants simply express interest with the click of a button and their profile is shared with the hiring manager.

Companies looking to post opportunities have a variety of packages to choose from depending on the level of support they would like. AboveBoard helps companies create their profile and job postings and can identify candidates best suited for a role to make the recruiting process even easier. It also serves companies that need to conduct confidential searches in private with its confidential opportunities offering, which only reveals certain details to applicants selected by the hiring team.

The commitment to diversity runs deep at AboveBoard, as evidenced by its $3 million fundraising round in July. The company disclosed that 91% of the outside funds were from underrepresented investors. The company’s own employees are incredibly diverse as well, with two-thirds of its employees being women, one-third LGBTQ+, 39% Black and 17% Latinx/Hispanic. Furthermore, 75% of the board of directors are from historically excluded groups.

“For years, companies have pledged to increase diversity in their executive ranks and on their boards and have struggled to make any true progress. Companies cannot continue to use the same hiring methods and expect a different outcome,” says Lucinda Duncalfe, founder and CEO of AboveBoard. “Executives should get hired based on what they know, not who they know. AboveBoard makes this possible.”

The Buzz

Diversity and inclusion in the workforce is a major priority for companies in 2021, but progress has been slow, particularly at the executive and director levels. AboveBoard wants to accelerate DE&I initiatives and bring diversity to the executive suite by making it easier for companies to connect with qualified candidates from historically excluded communities.