Join us for our installment of the Pacesetters Doing Business series featuring Boston Planning and Development Agency on December 7, 2023.
3:00pm - 4:00pm
Jenny Holaday will share her journey into leadership as President of Encore Boston Harbor and first woman to run a casino in Massachusetts.
2:00pm - 4:00pm
Encore Boston Harbor
Step into Winter Wonderland at our BIMA Holiday Gala. Gather your digital media and marketing peers for a night of networking and entertainment.
6:30pm - 9:30pm
Designed for mid-level managers and supervisors, this new certificate program addresses workplace well-being through unique, innovative, and actionable methods.
Join our Transformational DEI Certificate! Our comprehensive learning & development offerings are designed to connect and grow strong leaders who lead both inside and out of the office.
Our Women’s Leadership Program enables you to take your leadership to the next level by arming you with the most in-demand leadership toolkit.
Our Boston’s Future Leaders (BFL) program provides emerging leaders with a socially conscious and civically engaged leadership toolkit, as well as the opportunity to apply their knowledge through experiential assignments.
City Awake empowers young professionals in a variety of ways that encourages these rising leaders to stay invested in the region’s future success.
We are developing an ecosystem of corporations and partners with the influence and buying power to transform economic inclusion for minority business enterprises (MBEs).
The Fierce Urgency of Now Festival brings Boston’s diverse young professionals together with business leaders, organizations and their peers to build connection, advance careers and ignite positive change.
BIMA (the Boston Interactive Media Association) serves a vibrant community of like-minded professionals from agencies, brands, publishers, and ad-tech companies with business interests in the New England market.
For nearly 30 years, the Chamber’s Women’s Network has connected female professionals of all background and career levels. Today, our Women’s Network is the largest in New England, strengthening the professional networks of women each year.
The Massachusetts Apprentice Network convenes employers, training providers, and talent sources interested in developing and implementing apprenticeship programs in occupations across industries and statewide in fields such as tech, advanced manufacturing, healthcare, financial services, and more.
We support small business through public policy initiatives, events designed to connect small businesses in Greater Boston to their peers and established business leaders, professional development offerings, and free small business advising.
Explore our mission and values to better understand how we are leading the business community forward.
Our member directory is your resource to discover, connect, and engage with Boston’s businesses from every industry and sector.
March 25, 2022
The Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce submitted testimony regarding Docket #0291, An Order for a hearing regarding equity in city contracts, which is sponsored by Councilor Brian Worrell.
In 2018, the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce created the Pacesetters initiative to increase supplier diversity at member companies. Pacesetters are large companies and anchor institutions committed to using their procurement purchasing power to close the racial wealth gap by intentionally increasing spend with minority business enterprises (MBEs). There are 36 Pacesetters and Signatories representing a range of industries, including hospitals, universities, financial services, legal firms, hospitality, and more. Through Pacesetters, business leaders continue to build an inclusive business community together by adopting best practices in supplier diversity.
Each open contract with the City of Boston is an opportunity to advance equity in a meaningful way, and to support the City’s efforts to improve supplier diversity. The Chamber offers lessons and best practices learned in our four years of running Pacesetters.
Consider at least one MBE for bids
The Pacesetters, including the C-Suite executives and procurement directors, implement internal processes to ensure that at least one MBE – and preferably more than one – is considered during the procurement review process. When there is only one MBE in consideration, unconscious bias can appear and negatively impact the assessment of the MBE.
Communicate opportunities directly to MBEs
In addition to procurement processes, many Pacesetters have ongoing conversations with MBEs to encourage, mentor, and share available opportunities for partnership. Pacesetters participate in the Chamber’s “Doing Business” event series to connect with MBEs and ease the burden of bidding and procurement processes. During this free series, Pacesetters are transparent about their upcoming opportunities and procurement procedures, which allows for hundreds of MBEs to begin and grow a transformative business relationship.
Implement training and accountability
Pacesetters are taking an innovative approach to supplier diversity, including completing a training course to recognize bias. Many Pacesetters adopt internal accountability and assessment measures to ensure that a valid business reason, and not implicit bias, is the reason a diverse business is not selected during the procurement process.
Revise practices to reduce barriers to entry
Many Pacesetters reviewed and changed bidding practices and contract policies to increase the inclusion of diverse vendors. The Pacesetters from all industries understand that extended payment dates and high insurance requirement for projects are prohibitive to the operations of smaller companies. By reassessing the payment schedule, Pacesetters are creating conditions for a successful business relationship.
Engage diverse suppliers with a multi-tier strategy
There is also more opportunity for partnerships in the procurement process when multi-year and multi-million-dollar opportunities are divided into smaller opportunities. Pacesetters have taken an inclusive approach to larger contracts, understanding that expansive, long-term projects can involve diverse partners at the Tier I and Tier II levels. This transformative approach can multiply opportunity, reaching more diverse businesses and vendors.
Include D&I plans with bids
For large projects that require a bid submission, a diversity and inclusion plan should be required with the scope. This approach, known as the “Massport model,” encourages and incentivizes the purposeful advancement of diversity and inclusion, including measurable outcomes and substantial involvement of diverse business partners.
With strategic planning to advance equity in contracts for the City of Boston, not only will businesses of color benefit, but this will also lead to the creation of generational wealth for diverse families and communities.