Building Inclusive Workplaces: Why Business as Usual Isn’t Cutting It

Building Inclusive Workplaces: Why Business as Usual Isn’t Cutting It

At Peakon, we believe work should work for people — all people. To truly understand how all of your employees are feeling in your workplace, people analytics must play an important role in your Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DE&I) strategy.

As Peakon’s Global Director of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion, I recently took the stage at HR Congress to share how organizations can proactively measure their inclusion internally, and develop a meaningful DE&I strategy — a topic that’s top of the priority list for many of us.

Peakon's DE&I conference

Business as usual isn’t cutting it

Businesses have taken the same approach for years, with little progress. According to CNBC, Big Tech companies, such as Facebook, Google, Apple and Microsoft have been publishing annual diversity reports that focus on representation since 2014. However, few have made much ground. 

Companies have issues such as:

  • A lack of inclusivity: While the majority of people feel their companies are diverse, only 29% feel their company is inclusive.
  • Chief Diversity Officers are not empowered: Many Chief Diversity Officers are underleveled, underfunded, and sit on understaffed teams, meaning those who are supposed to lead the charge on this work are not set up for success.
  • A focus on reporting without action: As mentioned above, six years after big tech companies released demographic data, Forrester found there’s been little change in representation.

While there is no shortage of tools to help improve the diversity of your organization, most Chief Diversity Officers still struggle to create a systematic approach that fosters inclusion throughout the employee experience, including top to bottom accountability and equal opportunities.

We must do more, and we must do it better

It isn’t good enough to keep doing the same work over and over again, with minimal results, and expecting that employees will be satisfied with your efforts. We must take a proactive and integrated approach to DE&I. 

DE&I has become a priority for CEOs as they recognise how an integrated approach can help them attract, retain, and develop diverse talent.

The three key problems we hear from organisations in achieving this transition are:

  1. How can we measure our people’s perceptions of inclusion?
  2. How can we equip leaders to take ownership and action?
  3. How can we understand the impact, which in this case is ensuring diverse, equitable, and inclusive daily decisions?

At Peakon, we know how important this journey is and we’re proud to share exactly what we’re doing internally, too, to continue our work on embracing diversity and fostering environments of inclusion across our company. To read more, check out our 2020 DE&I report.

Moving forward

When it comes to inclusion, people have different needs. We should not make assumptions, which are riddled with bias and exclusion. 

Measuring diversity without inclusion is fruitless. We must hold ourselves accountable for inclusion in our workplaces. To do that, we must have meaningful, realtime, and proactive people analytics to fuel our continuously evolving diversity, equity, and inclusion strategies. 

If you’d like to learn more about how Peakon can help you do this, you can book a demo with our team or check out our DE&I solutions page.