What is a Violet Benchmark?

What are Violet Benchmarks?

Violet Benchmarks measure an individual provider’s ability to deliver culturally competent care to patients in three distinct communities (LGBQ, TGNC, and BIPOC). Your initial Benchmarks should be viewed as a snapshot of cultural competence at the time you accept your invite and complete your profile. Violet Benchmarks are dynamic, and increase as you add additional training and education (including those completed outside of Violet!), or experiences that are relevant to the LGBQ, TGNC, and BIPOC communities. 

How are Benchmarks calculated?

Violet determines your Benchmarks using a proprietary framework that was designed by clinical experts. Our benchmarking methodology is derived from countless research sources including, patient and clinician user interviews, as well as clinical models including Culturally Competent Community Care (CCCC) Model (Kim-Godwin, et al., 2001), 3-Dimensional Puzzle Piece Model of Culturally Congruent Care (Schim, et al., 2007), The Process of Cultural Competence in Delivery of Healthcare Services (Campinha-Bacote, 2002) among others. 

What elements contribute to my Benchmarks?

Using decades of research, we developed our benchmarking framework to include five core elements of cultural competence – education and training, work experience, lived experience, communities of interest, and self-efficacy. 

We validated our methodology with partnering organizations by using their provider’s Benchmarks to facilitate better patient-provider matches. Our results showed increased retention and adherence to treatment among patients who were paired with inclusive providers. 

The five elements of your cultural competence Benchmarks:

Lived experience.

Your lived experience information comes from the self-disclosures on race/ethnicity, gender, and sexuality entered in the competencies section for each individual community. Being a part of a community, unsurprisingly, impacts your Benchmark more heavily than having a family member or other kin that identifies as a member of a community, however, both are instrumental in contributing to your Benchmarks.

Work experience.

As your work experience is one of the most important indicators of your level of cultural competence, it is weighted the highest. In addition to the nature of the position, we take into account; years spent in the role, number of patients attended to, and percentage of each community represented within your patient population.


Education history is the second most impactful factor on your Benchmarks. We take into account any specific educational experiences, courses, and trainings that enrich your understanding of and increase your ability to support BIPOC, LGBQ, and/or TGNC communities. These may include general courses on cultural competence or health equity — or a specific focus on one of these communities. Your education history contributes to your Benchmarks based on the course topic, number of credits, and year the course was taken. We recommend only including education from the past five years, as cultural competence research and best practices are continuously evolving.

Communities of interest.

Your communities of interest calculation is based on the self selection in the What type of experiences have you had? module that appears when you are indicating your competencies within each specific community. A desire to work more with a specific community impacts your Benchmark, though less so than other factors.


For each community, you’re asked to rate your level of confidence delivering care to each community. This self attestation contributes to your Benchmark. While these responses impact your Benchmarks less than work experience, we still consider it important to include, as self awareness leads to openness to growth. We recommend updating your levels of confidence as you see fit, as you progress through education or complete any external trainings.

How do I increase my Benchmarks?

Borchum (2002) described cultural competence as "a non-linear dynamic process that is never-ending and ever expanding. It is built on increases in knowledge and skill development related to its attributes." 

Improving cultural competence requires ongoing and adaptive learning through Violet e-learnings, continuing medical education, and more. These initiatives ideally create opportunities for self-reflection and allow you to actively apply your learnings to your clinical practice. It is unlikely that any provider will reach excellence through Violet education alone. We recommend reviewing your profile every 6 months to make sure your information is current and adding relevant work or training experience. As you add new entries, your Benchmark will update accordingly.

How are my Benchmarks being used?

Your Benchmarks will give you a better understanding of your level of cultural competence relative to your peers in the same specialty. When you uncover gaps in your cultural knowledge, you can address it through Violet’s education and CME at your fingertips, for free!

Organizations use Benchmarks to identify their inclusive providers, and offer opportunities for growth for providers who are not quite at the level required to administer culturally-responsive care. Some organizations use this data in the aggregate to ensure every provider within their organization is at the Awareness level, for example. Other organizations are using our data to match patients to the provider that is right for them, based on their unique identities.

This is sensitive information. Who is this visible to?

As part of our partnership with your organization we have collected the following information up front: first and last name, role/title, email address, and NPI number.

We understand details about your identity are very personal and we’re committed to making sure the information you share is private. The personal information you enter after you’ve accepted Violet’s invitation — your race and ethnicity, sexual orientation, and gender identity is only viewable by you. We collect this data and display it in the aggregate to your organization’s administrator so they have greater insights into the diversity of their team. The only information your organization is able to access on an individual basis are the Benchmarks you’ve received, and your education progress.

What education is relevant for me to include?

Overall guidance:

  • Add trainings and educational courses that are specifically related to cultural competence (offer learning about BIPOC, LGBQ, TGNC communities)
  • Continue to update your profile as you complete new cultural competence-related educations. Any courses completed on the Violet platform will be automatically added.
  • Prioritize education from the past five years.
  • Be as explicit as possible by listing full course titles and organization names. This allows us to score your education accurately.
  • We do not accept entire college, university, masters, and PhD programs. We can only evaluate on an individual course-level in order to understand the specific application to Violet’s three communities.
  • If adding university courses, please enter the number of credits and not the number of hours (max. 3-4 credits).
  • Ensure that you are adding education in the education field -- not work experience such as residencies, practicums, internships, etc. These belong in the work experience section.

Examples of education that are relevant to your Benchmarks.

Examples of education that are NOT relevant to your Benchmarks.

What work experience is relevant for me to include?

Overall guidance:

  • Add any clinical work experience in which you provided care to the BIPOC, LGBQ, and TGNC communities, including your current position.
  • Work experiences may include clinical practice, internship, practicums, patient or health coordination, or supervisory roles. 

Examples of work experiences that are relevant to your Benchmarks.

Examples of work experiences that are not relevant to your Benchmarks.