Celebrating 5 Years of Affirmity (The Latest Chapter In a 50-Year Journey)

The end of October marks 5 years for the Affirmity brand—but, as our long-term clients may know, our story actually began nearly 50 years ago! As we pass this major milestone we wanted to take the opportunity to reflect on where we came from, discuss how we’ve evolved in the last five years under the Affirmity brand, and look ahead to some exciting developments in our near future.

Did you know we’ve been working under the Affirmity name since 30 October 2018? This five-year milestone is certainly one to celebrate, even if the reality is that our team has had a rather more complex history under a succession of predecessor businesses!

For example, back at the beginning of 2018, we were the Workforce Compliance and Diversity division of PeopleFluent. When PeopleFluent was acquired by Learning Technologies Group in May 2018, the Workforce Compliance and Diversity division was identified as “an already successful business unit” that would benefit from being spun off and supported as a separate entity.

But even before PeopleFluent, our expertise as a workforce compliance and diversity function was in use at a range of prior businesses. If you’ve been with us for some time, maybe you’ll remember some of the names in the following retrospective!

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Photograph of the Affirmity team in front of the Affirmity stand at NILG 2023

From Criterion to Affirmity: A Quick Look at Our Predecessors

  • 1975: Criterion. Criterion was an HR software business founded by economist Frank Alessio in partnership with a statistician and an organizational behaviorist. Affirmity’s managing directors Jeffery Lewis and Bruce Kile joined in 1988 and 1992 respectively.
  • 2000: Peopleclick. Criterion Incorporated was purchased by talent management systems company Peopleclick in December 2000. Peopleclick later additionally purchased Optimum HR in October 2001.
  • 2010: Peopleclick Authoria. After being acquired by Bedford Funding, Peopleclick was merged with Authoria, another talent management systems company, in January 2010.
  • 2011: PeopleFluent. Peopleclick Authoria announced its new brand name, PeopleFluent, in June 2011. Key Affirmity personnel worked in PeopleFluent’s Workforce Compliance and Diversity division.
  • 2018: Affirmity. After PeopleFluent was acquired by Learning Technologies Group (LTG) in May 2018, the Workforce Compliance and Diversity division was launched as a separate entity—Affirmity—in October 2018.

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Photograph of Affirmity team members at their 2022 Thanksgiving party

5 Years of Affirmity: A Sample of What We’ve Achieved So Far

The extended history of Affirmity covers some pretty significant shifts in not only technology—HR software’s gradual move online, for example—but the field of compliance and diversity itself. The last five years as a brand under LTG have resulted in further growth and evolution, as we help organizations adjust to challenges new and old within compliance and DE&I. Since 2018 we’ve:

  • Focused on our core competency of affirmative action/EEO, pay equity, and diversity solutions.
  • Strengthened our relationships with current clients and continued to offer best-in-class software and consultancy.
  • Leveraged the knowledge and expertise of our highly-tenured professional services team to fully embrace and optimize client programs.

We’ve also grown our product offering in the last five years:

  • We introduced our unified SaaS platform, enhancing organizations’ abilities to manage both workforce compliance and diversity programs simultaneously while increasing security and ensuring greater data precision. From our perspective, the software has also allowed us to increase the pace of future development while offering services alongside software.
  • We’ve expanded into new markets and reached new clients via GP Strategies, PeopleFluent, and other internal partners within LTG.
  • By seeking internal and external partners including GP Strategies, Teleskope, Traliant, Bundle, and Circa we’ve been able to expand complementary offerings such as our eLearning courses and employee resource group platform.

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Photograph of Affirmity team members during 2022 Christmas party

What’s Next for Affirmity?

We’re definitely not finished growing and evolving, and we plan to make the next five years even more notable. Our SaaS platform continues to be an important part of our strategy: we see it as a major point of leverage for unifying data and best practices across disciplines and moving organizations beyond affirmative action and into the DE&I space.

Affirmity will also continue to focus on the opportunities offered within Learning Technologies Group—both by deploying new content, services, and solutions developed by our sibling companies and finding new collaboration opportunities whenever fresh acquisitions are made.

Finally, we’re also working on enhanced data visualization capabilities for our software. These new developments will focus on getting results off practitioners’ desks and straight into the hands of leadership figures, achieving greater buy-in and accountability, and quicker results. Watch this space!

We want to extend a huge thank-you to all team members and clients who’ve taken this journey with us so far. Want to join us for the next five years of compliance and DE&I innovation? Contact us today!

About the Author

Jeffery Lewis headshotJeffery D. Lewis is co-managing director for Affirmity. He oversees professional services and sales for Affirmity’s affirmative action consulting services and diversity planning programs. He leads teams of consultants who deliver services spanning affirmative action, EEO compliance, and diversity planning. He also oversees a team of experts who specialize in evaluating allegations of discriminatory employment practices.

With more than 35 years with the company, Mr. Lewis has assisted hundreds of clients across numerous industries. He regularly presents executive seminars on all aspects of affirmative action and diversity management.

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