The Rutgers Center for Corporate Law and Governance has been working in partnership with The Conference Board, ESGAUGE, and Russell Reynolds Associates to track and report on shareholder voting trends at Russell 3000 firms.

A few key observations about 2021 human capital management (HCM) proposals were:

  • Shareholders filed more proposals on workplace and board diversity and EEO-1 data disclosure in 2021 than they did in 2020. By the same comparison, they filed fewer proposals on employee arbitration policies, employee health & safety, and gender or racial pay gap.
  • While the number of filed HCM proposals grew (97 in the first half of 2021 versus 87 in 2020), fewer these proposals came to a vote compared to 2020, indicating success in reaching a negotiated resolution on most – but not all – HCM topics.
  • Of those HCM proposals that came to a vote, more proposals received majority support compared to previous years – and proposals on EEO-1 data disclosure and employee arbitration policies received average majority support for the first time.
HCM Proposals in the Russell 3000: 2021 vs. 2020
Number Filed in First Half of 2021 Number Filed in First Half of 2020
Workplace Diversity 30 9
Board Diversity 21 7
EEO-1 Data Disclosure 23 10
Employee Arbitration Policies 3 10
Employee Health & Safety 2 4
Gender or Racial Pay Gap 6 14
Sexual Harassment 5 1

Read more details about these findings on The Conference Board website.