UCLI Certification Program - Submitted Goals

One of the requirements in the 2023 UCLI Certification Program was to set and work towards an internal goal. These are the goals that were submitted to UCLI in 2023 by a wide variety of legal employers in Utah. They can provide a helpful starting point for anyone hoping to improve hiring, retention, or inclusion outcomes. 

    1. Increase diversity within Shareholder ranks; measure at the beginning and end of the year to assess progress.

2. Launch a DEI Ally Pledge for all Partners and strive to get at least a 50% sign-up rate in the first year.

3. Strengthen our DEI initiative by implementing a firm wide supplier diversity program. The first phase of the initiative will be identifying a vendor who can assist with tracking and then measuring how the firm is currently doing.

4. Include questions for candidates in all of office hiring processes that explore a candidate’s understanding of, and demonstrated commitment to, issues of equity, inclusion and diversity.

5. Develop a cultural competency training and require/encourage attorney participation in it. Encourage firm participation in the YWCA Stand Against Racism Challenge.

6. Work on a formal mentoring program for associates.

7. Increase inclusivity among firm members through social initiatives, including organizing lunches throughout the year that bring together diverse groups of staff and attorneys.

8. Launch a Supplier Diversity Program in 2023.

9. Partner with a DEI eLearning provider and request that our Utah leaders, attorneys, engineers, patent agents, and select business service teams complete an unconscious bias digital learning course. Provide all employees access to a MicroVideo platform and embed DEI-discussions in team meetings, internal professional development trainings, and internal marketing communications with the goal of enhancing workplace dialogue to support inclusive best practices within our Utah office and the community.

10. 1. Assess and measure the impact of strategies and initiatives, 2. Retention of lawyers of color & 3. Implementation of administrative staff strategy

11. Have the boss do regularly scheduled, quarterly check-ins with each of the employees.

12. Enhance our commitment to foster an inclusive work environment, business, and professional development based on open communication and mutual respect, and to encourage initiative, innovation, teamwork, and loyalty for all attorneys, regardless of race or ethnic background. By honoring the unique qualities of individuals, educating our colleagues, and building meaningful alliances, we intend to promote a diverse group of qualified professionals that reflect the communities in which we live and the clients that we serve.

13. Create a diversity, equity and inclusion policy.

14. Improve retention and workplace inclusiveness in 2023. Our office is growing and we want to maintain and improve upon our efforts on this front. Part of that goal will include more office events, encouragement of on-site collegiality, and recognizing and acting upon red flags in retention.

15. Develop better processes for diversity and inclusion in the summer associate and law clerk program, specifically, opportunities for summer associates and clerks to work with attorneys in providing pro bono legal services.

16. Attract and retain employees with diverse backgrounds by creating an inclusive community for all new and existing lawyers and staff.

17. Implement a yearly survey and explore the possibility of exit interviews for all attorneys and staff with an eye toward the experience of anyone with a diverse identity. Hold a DEI training for all attorneys and staff.

18. Embed DEI considerations in legal talent development processes and procedures, working to ensure that diverse attorneys receive equitable access to assignments, feedback, professional development, and client opportunities.

19. Our DEI Committee will be responsible for arranging an all-staff training focused on communicating with emotional intelligence in regard to the supervisor/supervisee relationship. A short period after the training, the committee will survey attendees to solicit responses about how the information applies to them and impacts their work. Based on attendee feedback, additional trainings will be arranged to address the need for a more in-depth discussion of sub-topics.

20. Maintain and improve an inclusive and diverse work culture that promotes individual perspectives and fosters individual professional growth. Create recurring programs and learning opportunities to bolster diversity, equity, and inclusion awareness and policies for both employees and management. Establish annual internal audits for employee feedback to identify areas of improvement in the workplace for matters of diversity, equity, and inclusion.

21. Hold a firm-wide diversity and inclusion training to educate all employees on the importance of diversity and inclusion in the workplace.

22. Celebrate our differences and cultivate community through creating an internal “our stories” feature and regular email communications for staff and attorneys to share their backgrounds, stories, and cultures, as well as undertaking a firm-wide community service project.

23. Retain critical employees who bring diversity to our organization and develop an internal policy to retain these individuals.

24. Create a more inclusive environment for all employees. Review the recruitment process to ensure equal opportunity for all applicants through the entire recruiting process. Review exit information to determine why employees are leaving.

25. Pursue a more diverse, equitable and inclusive working environment for staff and attorneys alike through robust retention efforts and increased inclusion initiatives, reinforcing that our firm is a place where all individuals are welcome and celebrated, regardless of protected class, educational background or other experience.

26. Our Diversity & Inclusion Committee will continue our goal of reinvigorating and fine-tuning retention through increased collaborations with internal and external resources, including clients and community partners. We will improve inclusivity for staff through several initiatives, including the launch of an Inclusivity & Belonging Subcommittee focused on our business service professionals across all offices.

27. Our firm’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee’s focus is to establish procedures and infrastructure necessary to be compliant with the Mansfield Rule, a national initiative that reinforces our commitment to diversity in the legal profession. The initiative requires the Firm to consider a diverse pool of candidates for leadership positions, including internal promotions, lateral attorney hires, and management roles. The Firm will also prioritize transparency by sharing selection guidelines and job descriptions for committees and management. Meeting set goals will result in Mansfield Certification, strengthening the Firm and improving our ability to meet clients’ needs.

28. Last year our firm’s executive team approved the formation of a Firm-Wide Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee to benefit the entire firm, both staff and attorneys. Our goal this year is to complete the formation and begin the functioning of this group. To date, proposed chairs from Attorneys and Staff have been selected and we are working toward forming the full committee who should set their mission and goals for this new committee. Accordingly, our goal is to have this committee fully functioning by year’s end.

29. Continue efforts to diversify our board of trustees. Review our hiring and recruitment process to ensure we are reaching diverse communities. Continue internal conversations with staff about DEI to ensure we are creating a safe and inclusive culture.

30. Increase opportunities for work for diverse colleagues in the office.  Continue to be intentional in recruiting diverse attorneys.

31. Find candidates from underrepresented backgrounds. We are committed to supporting fellow female attorneys both within our firm and without. Two of us have been reaching out to other female attorneys in the community to strengthen the relationships among female attorneys and support our practices across firms. We will look for ways to mentor female attorneys, specifically as they progress from associates to partners.

Launch a DEI Ally Pledge for all Partners and strive to get at least a 50% sign-up rate in the first year.

Work on a formal mentoring program for associates.

Increase inclusivity among firm members through social initiatives, including organizing lunches throughout the year that bring together diverse groups of staff and attorneys.

Embed DEI considerations in legal talent development processes and procedures, working to ensure that diverse attorneys receive equitable access to assignments, feedback, professional development, and client opportunities.

Hold a firm-wide diversity and inclusion training to educate all employees on the importance of diversity and inclusion in the workplace.