Hiring experts expect demand for this role to surge in 2020 — and it can pay a median of $126,000

2019 brings to a close a decade in which workplace equality has gained increasing prominence on the global agenda.

Revelations from the #MeToo movementgender pay gap disclosure policies and repeated reports of entrenched diversity shortcomings at the top levels of business have highlighted the continued work to be done.

However, analysts are optimistic that 2020 could usher in a new era for employment equality as companies double down on their drive to hire specially-appointed diversity and inclusion (D&I) professionals.

Glassdoor, in its “2020 Job Trends” report, predicts that recruitment of D&I specialists will become a major priority for a broad swathe of employers in the coming year as they seek to modernize their corporate culture and attract new employees.

“In 2020 and beyond, as companies continue to build action-oriented diversity and inclusion teams, we expect to see a wave of hiring for leaders and managers that will help carry forward the mission of building a more diverse and inclusive workforce,” Glassdoor’s chief economist, Andrew Chamberlain, wrote.

Michelle Armer, chief people officer at job site CareerBuilder agrees, putting increased D&I initiatives as one of her top employment picks for the new year.

Diversity and inclusion on the rise

Diversity and inclusion positions have been rising in recent years as employers, especially large corporations, have come to acknowledge their value.

Demand for the role — which incorporates recruitment, HR and leadership duties — surged 106% in the U.K. in 2019, according to Glassdoor data. Germany saw an uptick of 79%, while job postings rose 53% and 30% in France and the U.S., respectively.

Global jobs site Indeed, by comparison, saw D&I positions grew 23% in the year to November 2019.

Employees, meanwhile, are expressing increasing interest in the nascent professional as new opportunities to advance office culture open up.

Glassdoor found employee D&I job searches rose 19% in 2019.

A lucrative career

Besides driving important diversity discourse, roles in the D&I profession can also prove a lucrative career choice, analysts say.

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