Diversity is the mix of people who make your organisation unique. Although the goal is not to put people in boxes, chances are you're bound to come up against a situation where you would like to know more about a specific characteristic. On our diversity pages, you'll find tips and insights about the key diversity characteristics whilst at the same time helping you treat your employees as people - not categories, following our launch on the 24th May.
Achieving diversity in the workplace is about ensuring that the people who work within and throughout your organisation are representative of wider society.
Leading employers have recognised that there is a real benefit to seeking to achieve a mix of people that reflects the diverse world in which they are operating. But getting a mix of people is not enough; employers must also create an inclusive environment in which diverse employees can work together, feel valued and add value to the organisation.
Efforts to increase the number of senior women, particularly at boardroom level, have had a lot of media attention, but there is much more to workplace diversity than simply hiring more female employees.
Diversity in the workplace also covers age, race, nationality, religion or belief, sexual orientation, physical and mental disabilities, physical appearance and social background, as well as gender identity and transgender issues.
Diversity in the workplace can have numerous benefits to you as an employer. Put simply, the greater the mix of people in your business, the greater the mix of skills, experiences, perspectives and ideas you can draw on.
Different types of people bring different talents and competencies to the table. For example, a female manager may have a different take on a problem than a male manager, and together they can solve the issue more effectively. A younger colleague straight from education may bring new ideas; working with someone with experience could make those ideas flourish.
Workplace diversity has huge benefits for companies seeking to compete on a global scale. Having a greater mix of people within your organisation gives you the opportunity to increase your cultural understanding, you are more likely to see opportunities in new markets and better placed to exploit those opportunities.
A diverse workforce, in an inclusive environment, is more likely to be an engaged and productive one. Employers have found that promoting diversity, demonstrating that there is a need for everyone's talents within the organisation, helps to make people feel valued.
Diversity in the workplace in itself will not deliver benefits if it is not a place where people feel motivated and included. Just having a good mix of people, without creating an inclusive environment in which they can flourish could lead to significant challenges.
Increasing workplace diversity does not mean integrating people into your workforce by stripping away their sense of identity and individuality. People can work best when they can authentically be themselves. An inclusive culture is complex, the organisation must be cohesive but the culture must be flexible enough to include many different types of people.
All employers need to be aware or the Equality Act and ensure that employees and managers understand their rights and responsibilities in this area. As the workplace gets more diverse, making sure you have policies and practices in place to tackle discrimination and create an inclusive culture is vital.
Failure to comply with the law can have serious consequences. In addition to costly tribunal claims, there is the risk of significant reputational damage.
With the Equality Act 2010 covering so many different areas, it can be difficult to know where you stand, even if you have every intention of complying with the law.
At Inclusive Employers, we can help you navigate the often complex world of equality legislation and create a workplace that's diverse, inclusive and puts everyone on an equal footing.
As a member, you'll benefit from expert advice and guidance, assistance in setting up the right policies and procedures and access to our helpline for all your queries about equality, diversity and inclusion.
You can also take advantage of our programme of events, through which you can meet and learn from other experts and other employers.
Inclusive Employers can help you understand the diversity in the workplace, providing information, guidance and advice on increasing the diversity of your organisation and creating an inclusive culture.
As a member, you'll benefit from the experience of others in the growing network, learning from leading employers and sharing what works. Along with guides, factsheets and member events, you will have access to our helpline for advice on both employment and legal issues.
For more information, call us now on 020 7803 0689 or email us at email@example.com.