National Academies Press: OpenBook

Guidance for Diversity in Airport Business Contracting and Workforce Programs (2020)

Chapter: Chapter 1 - Introduction to the Guidebook

« Previous: Front Matter
Page 1
Suggested Citation:"Chapter 1 - Introduction to the Guidebook." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Guidance for Diversity in Airport Business Contracting and Workforce Programs. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25896.
×
Page 1
Page 2
Suggested Citation:"Chapter 1 - Introduction to the Guidebook." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Guidance for Diversity in Airport Business Contracting and Workforce Programs. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25896.
×
Page 2
Page 3
Suggested Citation:"Chapter 1 - Introduction to the Guidebook." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Guidance for Diversity in Airport Business Contracting and Workforce Programs. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25896.
×
Page 3
Page 4
Suggested Citation:"Chapter 1 - Introduction to the Guidebook." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Guidance for Diversity in Airport Business Contracting and Workforce Programs. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25896.
×
Page 4
Page 5
Suggested Citation:"Chapter 1 - Introduction to the Guidebook." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Guidance for Diversity in Airport Business Contracting and Workforce Programs. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25896.
×
Page 5
Page 6
Suggested Citation:"Chapter 1 - Introduction to the Guidebook." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Guidance for Diversity in Airport Business Contracting and Workforce Programs. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25896.
×
Page 6
Page 7
Suggested Citation:"Chapter 1 - Introduction to the Guidebook." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2020. Guidance for Diversity in Airport Business Contracting and Workforce Programs. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25896.
×
Page 7

Below is the uncorrected machine-read text of this chapter, intended to provide our own search engines and external engines with highly rich, chapter-representative searchable text of each book. Because it is UNCORRECTED material, please consider the following text as a useful but insufficient proxy for the authoritative book pages.

1 Diversity is integral to every workplace across all industries. A diverse workforce is one that represents society in terms of ethnicity, gender, race, and other identities. In the United States, diversity and equality are important social values, and employment opportunities represent a key pathway toward creating a more inclusive and equitable society. In addition, a diverse workforce can benefit the employer by assuring it has workers with the skills, knowledge, expe- rience, and qualifications it needs. This Guidebook provides best practices to demonstrate how to build and maintain a diverse workplace and award contracts to diverse business contractors and concessionaires, and provides case studies to illustrate the value and importance of workplace and contractor diversity. It also provides details on the costs and benefits of diverse contracting and workforce programs and demonstrates how to measure these using an Airport Diversity Contracting Benefit-Cost Tool (Benefit-Cost Tool). This Guidebook also offers analysis and communications strategies for airports. Purpose of the Guidebook The goal of this Guidebook is to help airports of all types and sizes increase diversity in their business contracting and ensure they have a diverse and inclusive workforce. It provides guid- ance and tools to assist airport operators, vendors, contractors, tenants, and other stakeholders to identify and quantify the benefits, costs, and regional economic impact of diverse business contracting for airports. It also describes the challenges facing airports’ diversity and inclusion initiatives and identifies best practices airports can use to mitigate those challenges in airport workforce programs. This Guidebook focuses on how to promote diversity in airports. Airports provide millions of jobs across the United States in a variety of roles, from engineering to human resources to food service. Recruitment and contracting efforts at airports represent a significant opportunity to build a more diverse transportation sector and a more diverse American workforce overall. This Guidebook provides strategies and practices airports utilize to build and maintain workforce and business diversity, and provides case studies that showcase how airports are successfully implementing the strategies and practices. The content is specific to airport staff, including exec- utives, diversity officers, those involved in business contracting, and lawyers. In addition, the content will be directly relevant to businesses seeking contract opportunities and those working with airports as contractors, concessionaires, and goods and services providers. Professionals in other transportation sectors may also find useful practice tips, and those outside the transporta- tion sector may find content that can be adapted and applied to their industry. U.S. airports serve multiple purposes and roles. They are transit hubs or thoroughfares for air travel; centers of commercial activity in a broad range of industries; economic engines for C H A P T E R 1 Introduction to the Guidebook

2 Guidance for Diversity in Airport Business Contracting and Workforce Programs local, regional, and state governments and communities; and partners with governments ensur- ing environmental responsibility in the management of their operations. U.S. airports operate more as businesses and small cities than as traditional public agencies. To sustain their economic viability, thrive as organizations, and achieve greater diversity in thought and innovation, airports must be able to continue to attract diverse talent in all aspects of their internal workforce and that of their business partners, contractors, tenants, and concessionaires. Diversity in the Workplace The passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 marked one of the biggest changes in workplace diversity. Under the law, people from disadvantaged backgrounds, such as ethnic and racial minorities and women, were protected from workplace discrimination. Since the passage of this law, the American workforce has diversified significantly. Increased legal protection, including Equal Employment Opportunity laws, has been enacted to improve employment opportunities for workers from historically disadvantaged backgrounds. In addition, many workplaces have developed in-house diversity programs to comply with the legal requirements or to go above and beyond them. In the United States, professional diversity programs have been used for decades to improve workforce representation of all demographics. Beginning in the 1960s, the military and some higher education institutions started developing the type of modern diversity training programs that are now used in many sectors. The initial purpose of these training programs was to increase sensitivity to racial differences and to reduce racism in society overall following a backlash to the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Earlier military diversity programs had focused on integrating Black men into the military, and with the passage of civil rights laws that focus expanded (Vaughn 2007). The military’s diversity policies were adopted by other sectors and expanded to include gender as well as all racial and ethnic minorities (Ostby and Protextor 2017). Today many workplaces have diversity and inclusion programs in place. Although Asian, Black, Latino, and Native American professionals are still underrepresented in many industries and are notably under- represented in leadership roles, overall participation of ethnic and racial minorities has grown significantly in the last few decades. Current trends indicate that white working professionals will eventually make up less than 50 percent of the total workforce (Frey 2018). To keep pace with these demographic changes, most workplaces will need to have effective diversity policies in place. This will ensure that workplaces recruit some of their best candidates and employees from increasingly diverse backgrounds. Note that throughout this Guidebook, racial and ethnic minority terms are used as they are defined in 49 CFR Part 26, although Latino is also used as a more inclusive term but can be considered interchangeable with Hispanic. Gender diversity in the workplace has also grown significantly since the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Women now comprise just under half of all working professionals outside of the military (U.S. Department of Labor n.d.). In addition, women are currently more likely to earn a college degree than men of the same age. Organizations that want to recruit the best candi- dates and remain competitive need to include women fully in their workforce. Despite progress, women are underrepresented in senior management and leadership roles. Current trends show that the percentage of women participating in the workforce has declined slightly since the 2008 recession, although recent data from 2019 indicates that women are close to participating in the workforce at pre-recession levels. Increased participation in the workforce for women can be driven by policies that fall outside the scope of a traditional diversity program, such as flexible family leave policies (Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council n.d.). Small businesses also play an important role in overall diversity trends. An estimated 89 percent of firms in the U.S. have fewer than 20 employees, while more than 99 percent have fewer than

Introduction to the Guidebook 3 500 employees (Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council n.d.). The U.S.DOT recognizes small businesses as a key source of diversity. Firms owned by minorities and women are granted specific protections under the U.S.DOT Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) program to prevent discrimination (U.S.DOT 2014). Diversity in Airports ACRP has developed this Guidebook to help airports recruit and retain a diverse workforce and to highlight the social and economic benefits of diversity in airport contracting and concessions. ACRP considers diverse businesses to be businesses certified in accordance with 49 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 26 as DBEs, those certified in accordance with 49 CFR Part 23 as Airport Concession Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (ACDBEs), Minority-owned Businesses Enterprises (MBEs), Woman-owned Business Enterprises (WBEs), and other small businesses. A diverse workforce includes individuals with disadvantaged backgrounds, including minori- ties and women. This Guidebook provides a discussion of the legal requirements airports are bound to in terms of diversity in the work- force and diversity in contracting, step-by-step instructions for airports seeking to develop or expand their diversity programs, and the Benefit-Cost Tool, a benefit-cost analysis tool for airports looking to quantify the value of their business diversity programs. The Guide- book walks users through the benefits and costs of administering business and workforce diversity programs, and provides guidance on how to analyze and communicate the benefits and costs. With more than 9.6 million employees, U.S. airports and the businesses that serve them contribute significantly to the aviation industry workforce. Given the number of jobs in this industry, employment and contracting in aviation represent significant opportunities for diversity both within the industry and within the transportation sector more broadly. The diversity of the workforce is an important measure of success for many airports. A diverse workforce can make the difference between having sufficient qualified candidates to fill all necessary functions at an airport and a shortage of trained staff to fill critical roles. More diversity can also mean increased competition, better rates for contracts, and a reduction in socioeconomic gaps. As demographics change and as the aviation industry continues to seek highly qualified candidates and businesses to support its operations, diversifying the labor and business pool will be a key strategy for ensuring that airports are able to remain efficient and profitable. Local communities can also benefit from working at or with airports. Large, medium, and small airports hire hundreds of local employees and may offer substantial contracts and concessions that generate income within the community. For this Guidebook, diversity at airports consists of: 1. Diverse businesses—Businesses certified as federal DBEs or ACDBEs, woman- and minority- owned businesses, and other small businesses. Programs focusing on contracting with diverse businesses are referred to as business diversity programs. 2. Diverse workforce—A workforce that includes individuals with historically disadvantaged backgrounds, including minorities and women. The workforce includes both internal and external employees at airports. Internal workforce refers to staff employed directly by the airports. External workforce refers to staff employed by contractors, vendors, airlines, and other firms working at or for the airport. ACRP Definitions of Diverse Businesses ACRP considers diverse businesses to be businesses certified in accordance with 49 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 26 as Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (DBEs); those certified in accordance with 49 CFR Part 23 as Airport Concession Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (ACDBEs); minority- owned businesses (MBEs); woman-owned businesses (WBEs); and other small businesses.

4 Guidance for Diversity in Airport Business Contracting and Workforce Programs Intended Audience The Guidebook is intended to support airports of all sizes. It is likely to be most helpful to airport policy makers and chief executives, diversity program officials, and airport contracting, procurement, and financial staff. Airport policy makers and chief executives will be provided with the information necessary to understand the value of diversity programs and establish poli- cies and directives to support them. Diversity program officials will be provided with guidance and best practices to design and implement effective diversity programs and understand the potential effect—and estimate the actual effect—of diverse business contracting on the airport and its surrounding community. Airport contracting, procurement, and financial staff will be able to ensure that those responsible for evaluating the costs of airport contracting practices have information that includes all relevant costs and benefits. Other stakeholders will under- stand how their efforts can be incorporated into airport workforce diversity programs and how they might be affected by these and diverse business contracting practices. Attorneys representing airports have widely varying roles and responsibilities related to imple- menting and enforcing contracting or workforce programs. Attorneys are tasked with providing legal advice or opinions concerning a broad range of issues, from contract or procurement process compliance to regulatory and constitutional law support for policies and practices relating to social responsibility policy initiatives in employment or public contracting. The Guidebook provides insight into these relevant legal issues to help airport counsel provide applicable legal advice given the unique circumstances of the program or policy. Other agencies and stakeholders that would benefit from this guidance include administrators of small and disadvantaged business programs at state departments of transportation (DOTs); trade organizations’ business diversity committees and task forces; professional service providers; construction contractors; and concessionaire personnel. How the Guidebook Can Help Airports This Guidebook examines business diversity programs’ best practices and the challenges of airports that comply with federal, state, and local laws and regulations. It shares information on innovative approaches that airports have developed that go beyond federal regulatory require- ments. Some of these leaders in airport contracting and workforce diversity are featured in the case studies in Appendix A. Where possible, this Guidebook offers solutions to the challenges that airport recruitment and contracting offices encounter when trying to build and maintain a diverse workforce or a successful diverse business program. The Benefit-Cost Tool itemizes the costs of developing specific business diversity initia- tives and estimates the return on investment for airports undertaking those diversity activities. Understanding the costs of business diversity activities and the benefits of diversity generally can help airports develop or expand their diversity programs. The information in this Benefit-Cost Tool can help airports make informed decisions, and the metrics the Benefit-Cost Tool produces can provide key information to airport executives and policy makers. Methodology and Data Collection This Guidebook was developed using a mixed methods approach. Interviews and case studies with airports informed most of the content on best practices and challenges related to diversifying contracts at airports as well as the challenges of recruiting and retaining a diverse workforce. A comprehensive literature review informed most of the content on best practices for recruiting and retaining a diverse workforce. The sample benefit-cost scenarios that appear throughout the

Introduction to the Guidebook 5 Guidebook were based on information obtained through the interviews, while the sample costs are based on a mix of information from interviews and the literature. Representatives from a total of 26 airports and airport authorities were interviewed for this project, including 23 commercial service airports and three general aviation airports. Of those 23 airports, 12 were interviewed individually and six were interviewed as part of the two focus group discussions on the costs and benefits of workforce and contracting diver- sity. In addition, 14 professional organizations in the aviation industry, diversity program consultants, construction firms, concessionaires, small businesses, and local governments were interviewed. Case studies were developed to highlight airports that are leading the industry in workforce and contracting diversity. Of the 26 airports that provided information for the Guidebook, six had been part of a previous ACRP study (ACRP Report 126). Those six airports were included as follow-up case studies to provide an update on their practices for enhancing diverse business participation in their contract opportunities. An additional six airports were selected for this project. The additional selections were made based on geographic location, proximity to a large urban area, and airport size and type. Benefits of the Guidebook This Guidebook is primarily a technical resource for airports. It offers instructions and guidance for staff working to build, expand, and enhance workforce or contracting diversity programs. For airports starting a diversity program or considering updates to an existing diversity program, this Guidebook provides a snapshot of the costs and benefits of various diversity activities. In addition, the Guidebook provides instructions for how to develop, implement, or evaluate innovative diversity initiatives. For airports with successful diversity programs already in place, this Guidebook offers tools to help staff illustrate the value of those programs to stakeholders. Businesses may also find useful information about how airports are structuring their diversity programs to better compete for contracts. Other sectors or industries, particularly other sectors of the transportation industry, can also apply the tips and techniques in this Guidebook. Benefits to airports may include the following: • Airport staff will find technical assistance to help develop and improve their diversity programs, including step-by-step instructions for specific contracting and hiring practices that have been proven to promote diversity at other airports comparable in terms of location, type, or size. • Airport staff will understand the challenges that they may encounter as they expand or develop new diversity initiatives. • Airport diversity offices and contracting officers will have detailed guidance on how to imple- ment certain processes, with examples drawn directly from other airport programs with similar goals. • Airports will have a Benefit-Cost Tool to highlight the value of their business diversity programs to airport leadership and other stakeholders. • Using the Benefit-Cost Tool, airport staff seeking to develop or expand their diversity programs can estimate the return on investment for their approach before implementing it. Benefits to businesses that deal with airports include: • Small and disadvantaged business owners can learn about the outreach programs at specific airports and the resources that are available to them to become certified and compete for contracts.

6 Guidance for Diversity in Airport Business Contracting and Workforce Programs • Businesses can get a snapshot of the priorities that airports have when diversifying their contracting portfolios and recruiting candidates for training programs such as business mentorship programs. • Businesses can learn about the challenges airports face when reaching out to recruit new contractors and can work with their airports to overcome some of those issues. Other transportation sectors or industries also may look to this Guidebook for ideas about how to implement diversity programs in their workforces and contracting practices. Navigating the Guidebook This Guidebook provides instructions, ideas, and best practice tips for increasing diversity among contractors, concessionaires, and airport staff. In addition, the Guidebook provides a Benefit-Cost Tool that airports can use to calculate the return on investment for their business diversity programs, and a series of 12 case studies that highlight airports’ contracting and work- force diversity initiatives. Readers are encouraged to review the short chapter synopses provided here to determine the most appropriate place to start. For instance, staff who are relatively new to administering contracting diversity programs may first want to gain the legal context by reading Chapter 2 and gain insight into the programs’ benefits through Chapter 3. Staff looking to enhance their programs can review best practices highlighted in Chapter 4 and peruse the case studies in Appen- dix A for examples of how best practices are being implemented. Staff who wish to track data on contract diversity programs, but who lack complex software to do so, can review Chapter 6 for the types of cost and benefits to track and can turn to the Benefit-Cost Tool User Guide for instructions on how to track data using the tool. Throughout the Guidebook, users will find callout boxes that highlight key facts and concepts from the text; indicate how the Benefit-Cost Tool can help them apply the content; showcase innovative practices; and point readers to more information in the case studies. Contractors, concessionaires, and airport staff alike will find this report timely and relevant, with actionable guidance. The Guidebook provides airport operators with useful tools, best practices, and instructional material that can contribute to improved business and workforce diversity programs. With practical examples and case studies featuring airports and businesses that have successfully implemented diversity programs, the Guidebook offers applicable instruc- tion for airports at the beginning stages of implementing diversity programs, airports interested in modifying existing diversity programs, and airports already recognized for their diversity program achievements. Users of this Guidebook will gain insight on the types of costs and benefits of implementing diversity programs at airports and will learn how to use the Benefit-Cost Tool to better understand, itemize, and ultimately track the costs and benefits associated with these programs and communicate this information both internally and to external audiences. The subsequent sections in this Guidebook cover the following topics. Chapter 2 describes federal regulations relating to the participation of diverse businesses in federally assisted airport contracts and concessions and provides a broad overview of the legal issues for workforce diversity in general. This chapter targets diversity program staff and legal teams to help airports stay in compliance. In addition, the chapter discusses local law consider- ations concerning small business participation that airports might encounter. Endnotes elabo- rate on or further clarify legal issues. Chapter 3 describes the social and financial benefits of airport contracting and workforce diversity. There is also a section on the benefits to community members who live and work

Introduction to the Guidebook 7 around airports. This section targets contract managers, hiring managers, diversity program staff, human resources personnel, and other stakeholders such as airport policy makers and executives. Chapter 4 describes best practices and challenges in creating a diverse portfolio of contractors. This chapter targets diversity program staff and those who write, issue, and award contracts. Airport contractors and contractors seeking to work with airports may find useful information about what approaches airports consider when hiring contractors and what resources airports have for contractors to help them succeed. Chapter 5 describes best practices for developing a diverse workforce and discusses some common challenges to achieving workplace diversity. This chapter targets human resources departments and airport leadership staff; their counterparts in other transportation sectors may find some of the best practices and challenges relevant to their sectors. Chapter 6 lists the varying costs associated with diverse contracting and workforce programs at airports. It describes how to measure airport contracting and workforce diversity costs. This chapter targets airport diversity staff and support staff to help them identify the costs of busi- ness diversity initiatives and identify which departments might need to include line items for diversity initiatives in their budget. The chapter also targets staff responsible for workforce recruitment and training. It was informed primarily by expert interviews and provides empirical examples of real costs incurred by airports. Chapter 7 describes the importance of collecting and analyzing data on the benefits and costs of airport diversity programs, for determining their efficacy and deciding how to increase work- force and contracting diversity overall. It offers airports guidance on collecting benefit and cost information and provides suggestions on how best to communicate this information to internal and external audiences.

Next: Chapter 2 - Approaches and Techniques for Understanding the Parameters of Laws and Regulations »
Guidance for Diversity in Airport Business Contracting and Workforce Programs Get This Book
×
MyNAP members save 10% online.
Login or Register to save!
Download Free PDF

Many airports are already taking active steps to address and unlock the benefits of a diverse and inclusive workforce. These programs provide benefits to the airport and surrounding communities, but there has not been a comprehensive benefit-cost analysis for diversity contracting programs and their impact on the workforce.

The TRB Airport Cooperative Research Program's ACRP Research Report 217: Guidance for Diversity in Airport Business Contracting and Workforce Programs provides guidelines to assist airport operators and various stakeholders at airports of all types and sizes to identify and quantify the benefits, costs, and regional economic impact of diversity contracting for airport businesses.

As recipients of federal funds, airports are required to administer a federal program that seeks to provide equal access for participation in airport-related business opportunities. Likewise, many airports are also obligated to do so under state and local programs.

The report includes additional materials: an Airport Diversity Contracting Tool and a Tool Users Guide.

  1. ×

    Welcome to OpenBook!

    You're looking at OpenBook, NAP.edu's online reading room since 1999. Based on feedback from you, our users, we've made some improvements that make it easier than ever to read thousands of publications on our website.

    Do you want to take a quick tour of the OpenBook's features?

    No Thanks Take a Tour »
  2. ×

    Show this book's table of contents, where you can jump to any chapter by name.

    « Back Next »
  3. ×

    ...or use these buttons to go back to the previous chapter or skip to the next one.

    « Back Next »
  4. ×

    Jump up to the previous page or down to the next one. Also, you can type in a page number and press Enter to go directly to that page in the book.

    « Back Next »
  5. ×

    To search the entire text of this book, type in your search term here and press Enter.

    « Back Next »
  6. ×

    Share a link to this book page on your preferred social network or via email.

    « Back Next »
  7. ×

    View our suggested citation for this chapter.

    « Back Next »
  8. ×

    Ready to take your reading offline? Click here to buy this book in print or download it as a free PDF, if available.

    « Back Next »
Stay Connected!