Reporting Systems: DEI Reporting National Nonprofit

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The Christian Church Disciples of Christ (DOC) is a major North American Christian church denomination (organization) with congregations in the United States and Canada. With a long history of commitments to racial and gender equality, they have requirements for insuring diversity of volunteers on their more than 20 national ministry boards and committees. This is monitored by their General Nomination Committee (GNC) for diversity of gender (including nonbinary), race/ethnicity, geographical locations, age, and clergy status (lay, ordained, comissioned or in process). In addition, length of service on a particular board/committee is tracked to make sure there is healthy turnover.

Until 2020, this DEI (diversity equity and inclusion) reporting was collated manually using spreadsheets and manual calculations. In 2020, we built out a new reporting and monitoring system for DOC with Gravity Forms, GravityView and some Gravity Perks. Understandably, this internal site that contains personal information about individuals is locked down for privacy. The screenshots provided here were taken with permission depicting test data before launch.

Each ministry committee/board leader reports on the demographics of their own group, and has access limited to report and view only their group via custom user roles. Upon login, they are redirected to their own group main page, which has one entry displayed at the top with info on the group and it’s leadership.

In a few cases, a single leader is responsible for reporting on more than one group. In those cases, the sidebar has been configured to conditionally display access to their other group main pages.

We use GravityView to filter the entries of a form titled “Ministry Info”, and only display the entry for the ministry/board that is connected to the logged in user for this specific page. Because that user has been set as the author of this post, they are shown the “Edit Entry” link in the lower right corner of this entry, and are able to update any of the information about the board/ministry.

If they click on “edit entry” they see a front-end view of the form for that board/ministry “Ministry Info”, which offers options to edit the info. The Ministry Name dropdown is locked from editing using the  the Gravity Perk GP Read Only, because GravityView filtering depends on exact matching of this name, so we don’t want to have that changed inadvertently by the user.

On the main group page, below the ministry information, the authorized user sees entries for each of their previously entered group members, which are searchable, can be edited or deleted, and new members added. This form is titled “Nominee Info”.

The authorship of all these posts is set to the authorized user who is the ministy leader, so they also see the option to edit any of the entries, which is used mostly to update the length of service on the particular board/committee. They are also able to view an option to delete an entry after clicking on “edit entry”.

These reporting questions are built with Gravity Forms polling fields, so that below the display of group members, there’s a graphical and percentage display of the group demographics: age, gender, race/ethnicity, etc.

The “Nominee Info” form for entering group members information is shared across all groups within the system, so that while group leaders only see DEI data on their own group, national leadership can see that info across all groups within the denomination. Making the polls data display separately for each ministry/board unfortunately required a small hack of the GF Polls class-gf-polls.php file to add a filter. (We really try hard not to hack plugin files if we can help it, because it’s bad practice and then any plugin update may wipe out that added functionality.)

The WP editor blocks view of the entire page of a single ministry/board looks like this:

The first shortcode displays only the ministry info entry for this specific ministry (“Christian Board of Publication”). The second shortcode displays only the entries from the “Nominee Info” form for the “Christian Board of Publication”, and the specific GravityView (for view id 538) includes the search function. Note that only one view for the ministry info and one view for the nominee info are used across the site, simply filtering by the ministry name on each separate page implementation.

This system is not designed to export any information, but simply to be a graphical real-time snapshot of DEI across all boards/committees.

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