Corporate Diversity

Over the last few years WRISE has developed the list of the Top Ten areas renewable energy companies and organizations can focus on if they are interested in taking next steps on diversity and inclusion.
While we’ve been talking about these for a while we will make them more official and work to spread the word under a new initiative called Find Her Keep Her: Recruiting and Retaining Women across Renewable Energy


Women are underrepresented at all levels of the renewable energy industry. From entry level engineering, to the manufacturing floor, and up through the C-Suite, employers struggle to recruit and maintain top female talent across the space. And while many companies understand the importance of diversity, hiring managers appear baffled on how to meet this challenge, often citing a lack of qualified female candidates for positions. However, after years of interviews and anecdotal evidence, it’s clear to see that talented women exist in similar fields and within clean tech. Rather than just a dearth of talent, it is also the specific policies and market structures and the implicit biases that hold them in place that make it difficult for women to choose or stay in a career in this industry. Our series attempts to highlight stories from women and compare these real-life experiences with data from the hiring and retention policies used across the industry. The resulting narratives will help companies understand the real-world barriers that women face when choosing a career in renewables and create practical solutions and best practices for developing and maintaining a diverse workforce.


  • Cover the 10 biggest opportunities for addressing gender diversity among companies and organizations across the renewable energy sector
  • Explore and work to build understanding around intersectionality of identities and how experiences may differ under the broad umbrella of women in the workplace.
  • Highlight stories of individual women – helping women facing challenges in their own career paths know that they are not alone.
  • Highlight best practices from research on diversity and inclusion and case studies of companies that are finding successful models to create change at an institutional level so that other companies and organizations have concrete tools to get started.
  • Inspire companies and organizations to undertake self-reflection and internal practices that open them up to recruiting and retaining more women.

Launch Webinar:

Find Her Keep Her: Recruitment and Retention of Women across the Renewable Energy Space
(available in online WRISE Member Center as well)

Date: Tuesday June 27, 2017
Kristen Graf, WRISE
Kacie Peters, Alta Energy Inc.

In this webinar, Kristen Graf (WRISE Executive Director) explored practical strategies for addressing diversity in the workforce – particularly the engagement of girls and women – across the full length of the talent pipeline. We looked briefly at opportunities in K-12 and Higher Education and then focused most closely on research-based tips and best practices for companies and organizations that want to strengthen their own teams and those that want to influence the diversity of the industry overall – being sure we are encouraging actions that will build the workforce we need to build the clean energy future we want.

Top 10 Focus Areas:
These are not in any particular order, but represent important opportunities and a variety of the different aspects to think about when working on diversity.

  • Data – collecting it from the beginning to make sure the most important areas are being addressed early, tracking progress over time, and bench-marking against others
  • Goals and Responsibility – setting, tracking, and engaging top leadership
  • Corporate Culture – addressing implicit and explicit bias, internal education programs, engaging men in the conversation, and building valuable affinity networks
  • Hiring and Recruitment – building relationships across networks, job description design and tools, hiring process and structures
  • Pay and salary transparency
  • Promotion Reviews and Feedback
  • Family/Life/Work Integration – including parental leave, family leave, child care, elder care – for all, partner benefits, healthcare, leaves of absence, sabbaticals, vacation structures
  • Flexibility in work arrangements – flexible daily hours, compressed workweek, job sharing, part time, remote work
  • Career paths – transparency, cooperative career planning, career lattice, and continuing education
  • Leadership pipeline – diversity all the way up the chain to Executive Teams and Boards

The FHKH Top 10 Series:
We will be releasing pieces one at a time on each of the Top 10 areas. Each piece will cover:

  • The research and literature behind why we chose that as one of our Top 10
  • Any data we have been able to track down about the way that topic is currently being addressed or not across the renewable energy space
  • Best Practices from research and other industries
  • A specific story or case study from an individual or a company reflecting the importance of that area to recruiting and retaining women in the real world

Collecting Stories:
We have launched a social media campaign using the hashtag #FindHerKeepHer to collect stories from women and companies around the renewable energy space.

If you are interested in sharing a story feel free to post on social media using #FindHerKeepHer.

If you’d prefer to submit a story anonymously feel free to reach out to us directly

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