Date of Conferral
Doctor of Business Administration (D.B.A.)
In 2014, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission reported multiple claims of workplace discrimination in the United States; the claims resulted in costly settlements. The purpose of this qualitative, multiple-case study—which used the theory of enterprise risk management as the conceptual framework—was to explore how 4 human resource managers in small-to-medium sized enterprises in the southeastern region of the United States successfully implemented proactive strategies to reduce the financial and legal risk resulting from workplace discrimination. Using Yin’s 5 steps of data analysis along with triangulation of findings from the semistructured interviews, company documents, and websites, the following 4 themes were identified and verified: the need for education, external accountability, formalized policies and procedures, and the barriers to proactive strategies. To reduce risks from workplace discrimination, 3 recommendations for future action by human resources managers were proposed: education, external accountability, and formalized policies and procedures. The findings and recommendations can bridge the gap between small-to-medium enterprise human resource practices and efficacious enterprise risk-management strategies. A diverse workforce can catalyze innovation, increase organizational effectiveness, and thus benefit employers and employees. Communities may benefit by experiencing a culturally representative work environment and lower unemployment for underrepresented populations.