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IDA Ireland - Diversity and Inclusion Action Plan


Business Type: Public Sector
Location: Wilton Park House, Wilton Place, Dublin 2, Ireland
Mission Statement:
IDA Ireland partners with multinational companies to win and develop foreign direct investment, providing jobs for the economic and social benefit of Ireland.
No. of Employees: CA. 330

CSR Initiatives:

IDA Ireland’s CSR activities contribute to, uphold and deepen the core values – passion for performance and achievement, public service, professionalism and people – that support IDA’s overall strategy. Actions on Diversity and Inclusion form a key part of IDA’s work on CSR.

A Diversity and Inclusion team was established by IDA in November 2017 to consider diversity within the organisation across five pillars of diversity: Ability, Gender, LGBT+, Multicultural and Socio-Economic.

The Diversity and Inclusion team conducted research both inside and outside IDA, mapping where IDA is relative to international best practice and met with other organisations to get an insight into their approach. The team developed a Diversity and Inclusion Action Plan of initiatives including the appointment of Diversity and Inclusion Champions across the five pillars, created a programme of D&I events and a D&I communications strategy.

The action plan was presented to IDA’s Executive Committee in early 2018 and since then the Diversity and Inclusion team have worked with Executive Sponsors and HR to begin implementing the action plan’s recommendations.

Programme of Events
IDA hosted its inaugural International Women’s Day event in Dublin in March 2018, which was attended by over 100 IDA staff from across various teams and offices in Ireland, as well as IDA’s Board. Unconscious bias training was made available to staff.

The IDA LGBT Ally Network was launched in June 2018. The Ally Network is a key part of developing a supportive and inclusive culture in the workplace. Allies are persons who are visible and vocal advocates for LGBT+ colleagues, signalling to co-workers that they can feel open and accepted in the workplace. Also in June 2018, a Multicultural night was held in IDA’s Dublin HQ to celebrate the diverse nature of IDA’s workforce. The event brought the company’s global growth markets team together with colleagues in Ireland for networking and engagement.

Other events in 2018 included IDA hosting an OUTstanding networking event, attended by An Taoiseach in October; and an International Men’s Day event in November. Both events had the theme of winning through inclusion.


IDA’s Diversity and Inclusion initiatives are promoted primarily through internal channels, including on a dedicated Diversity and Inclusion section on IDA’s internal internet site. The dedicated space outlines the vision, mission statement and business case for IDA’s Diversity and Inclusion initiatives. It also features news items, images of Diversity and Inclusion events, a calendar highlighting upcoming events and contact details for the appointed Diversity and Inclusion champions.

Diversity and Inclusion, along with IDA’s other CSR initiatives across the workplace, community and the environment were also highlighted in IDA’s Annual Report for 2017.

CSR Dimension:

Please select the dimension(s) that you apply to your CSR Initiative and why?
IDA’s corporate social responsibility and sustainability initiatives across key pillars of the Government’s National Plan on CSR – the workplace, the community and the environment – focus on areas where the organisation goes above and beyond its statutory obligations and principle functions as a Government Agency

IDA’s actions on Diversity and Inclusion fall under the Workplace dimension of CSR, which includes areas such as equality, diversity, skills and employee engagement.

IDA has four core values under the organisation’s current strategy, one of which is the competence, dedication and excellence of its people. IDA recognises the importance of the workplace dimension of CSR in the attraction, retention and development of the talent needed to fulfil the organisation’s mission to win FDI for Ireland. The organisation also recognises the importance of supporting colleagues in their professional development, work life balance and personal wellbeing.

Business Impact:

IDA aims to mirror the diversity in society at all levels of the organisation and strives to build of culture of inclusion, fairness and opportunity.

A key element of the D&I programme has been inclusiveness and bringing colleagues together around common themes or ideas. Feedback in this regard has been positive and staff engagement around D&I is positive, per our staff survey.

We will continue to monitor progress as the programme moves into its second year.

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs):

IDA’s initiatives on Diversity and Inclusion align with the UN Sustainable Development Goals specifically,
SDG 5 on Gender Equality
SDG 10 on Reduced Inequalities.


What did you learn from your experience of creating and implementing a CSR initiative?

From a D&I perspective, the key learning was to continue to actively engage with colleagues as the plan is developed and rolled out. This ensures the programme is fully inclusive and evolves in line with organisation’s needs.

What advice would you give a business starting on their CSR Journey?

IDA’s D&I programme has been advocated from the top of our organisation, with the full support of our CEO and Executive Leadership team. This has been a key success factor in building momentum and support for D&I initiatives as they are rolled out.

For companies starting out particularly with D&I programmes, key recommendations are:
• Talk to colleagues and elicit their feedback around what’s important to them from a diversity and inclusion perspective
• Prioritise staff feedback in line with organisational goals for D&I
• Engage thought leaders and peer companies to identify best practice
• Set key deliverables for year one so you can track progress.

Download a copy of this Case Study as a pdf.

Case Study provided by
IDA Ireland
April 2019