The Results Are In: Camber Partners Are Approaching DEI with Intention and Action

Posted On May 31, 2022

We are proud to announce initial findings from the 2021/2022 Camber Survey System which showcases and celebrates the advances and progress of Camber’s partners over the past two years. Initial findings from the Survey show how Camber delivers systemic, scalable, and measurable programs, resources and tools  for the advancement of workplace diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) in the outdoor recreation economy.  

The Camber Survey System is offered annually, exclusively  to Camber Partners, comprising 300 corporate, small business and nonprofit partners that together employ 11,000 people in the outdoor recreation economy, an $689 billion strong U.S. economic driver representing more than 4.3 million jobs.

We’re shaping the information into substantive and actionable opportunities that companies can actualize today. 

Moving forward, all new and existing Camber partners are welcome to participate in the Camber Survey System. The initial results were so successful that we were able to establish a strong foundation upon which we’ll continue to build and to create a tailored DEI roadmap for Camber Partners in the Outdoor Recreation Economy. Two of the four reports have been published to date, and key public insights are highlighted below:

Actionable Takeaways from Report 1: Inclusive Culture and Leadership Practices

Fostering an inclusive culture requires thoughtful and intentional action. As with other successful business initiatives,, setting goals and reporting on the results of your efforts are ….. 

  • Companies are investing in DEI workplace resources for their teams and culture, and measuring their progress toward building equitable, diverse and inclusive. 
  • There is no “perfect” starting point. As long as an organization is fully committed to creating an inclusive workplace that attracts and retains diverse talent, Camber Diversity Maturity Journey Assessment Tool meets all organizations where they are – providing insight to where each Camber Partner is on their DEI journey. 
  • Setting DEI workplace goals, making investments, and tracking progress are  key differentiators to attracting and retaining a diversity of talent. 
  • Access is central to success. Within a workplace context, this means access to board rooms, to leadership positions, and to all the benefits that accrue to employees throughout this passion-driven industry.
  • Transparency is also central to meaningful DEI evolution. 78% of Camber partners clearly outlined their DEI goals and practices in the organization’s policy, an increase of more than 20% points from the first survey year.
  • Companies in the Outdoor Recreation Economy are outpacing the broader corporate sector in setting and attaining DEI goals. 100% of the Camber Partner survey cohort are setting goals in one or more areas of workplace DEI, and 88% of them are committed to implementing strategies based on research and best practices, 
  • As outdoor enthusiasts rapidly diversify, the Outdoor Recreation Economy must consciously and intentionally create inclusive, equitable workplaces that reflect the diverse groups of outdoor enthusiasts the industry serves everyday.
  • Future opportunities for focus include: 
    • The setting of intentional goals around inclusive and equitable recruiting amid nationwide competition for talent are future opportunities of focus.  
    • A focus on retaining a diverse talent pipeline. 
    • Engaging all team members at every leadership level to create a more inclusive culture rather than placing expectations for underrepresented emplolyees to achieve the companies over workplace DEI goals. 

Actionable Takeaways from Report 2: Equitable Supportive Systems

Equitable and supportive systems create an environment that attracts and retains a diversity of talent.. Companies are discovering the two keys to improvement are: listening to your team and prospective employees, and expanding traditionally restrictive definitions around certain benefits and how your employees choose to implement them. 

  • A strong benefits package for all employees helps create an inclusive workplace culture in which employees are rewarded and appreciated for their contributions to the organization.
  • Evidence suggests flexible work schedules and remote work are here to stay, and employees value these benefits. During the pandemic, 96% of Camber Partners offered such programs.
  • Don’t update employee benefit packages in a vacuum. Camber Partners have made great strides in evolving their benefits, through the recommended Camber Survey System results and Insights from the Voices of the Future of Work program-determining the most relevant and valued changes. 
  • Offering remote work as pandemic restrictions are lifted unlocks recruitment opportunities with a greater breadth of talent pools. Organizations are able to cast a wider net toward recruiting diverse talent. 
  • Camber Partners showed growth in 2021 by increasing paid family leave allowances from 74% in 2020 to 78% in 2021, and increasing caregiving assistance from 26% in 2020 to 33% in 2021. 
  • Companies are discovering their employees pay attention to your marketing. 45% of employees agree their organizations emphasize purpose and values through their marketing campaigns.
  • Employees are highly prioritizing professional opportunities that position them for growth in the organization. They realize the importance of DEI training to their professional growth.
  • Listening to what your diverse groups prioritize is central to retention and satisfaction. For example, after Millennial and Gen Z employees identified concern around financial planning, the number of Camber partners that increased individual financial counseling services (as a benefit) rose 10%.  
  • Future opportunities for focus include: 
    • Garner employee feedback to better understand and reflect the values of LGBTQ+ employees.
    • Consider increasing paid religious holiday leave to allow for inclusive recruitment across religious and faith backgrounds. And, importantly, clearly communicate that paid or other time off can be used for observance of religious holidays. 
    • While Camber partners have made gains in providing family planning and caregiving benefits to their employees, there is opportunity for expansion. This is key to retention, so direct consideration should be given to expanding benefits to all employees and to providing more inclusive definitions of what family planning and caregiving means.
      • Additionally, organizations should recognize that caregiving needs have placed disproportionate pressure on women and ethnically underrepresented employees. While this has alway been true, it has been exacerbated through the pandemic. Organizations have an opportunity to listen to these employees and identify the specific needs of the diverse populations.

We invite you to keep an eye on this blog and our upcoming social posts, as we’ll be taking deep dives into each of these topics and helping to shape actionable and implementable processes. These tools help deliver systemic and scalable workplace DEI resources, and industry-wide results, to the Outdoor Recreation Economy.
Join us.


Tiffany Smith

About Tiffany Smith