03. Team Work

Diverse culture drives competitive advantage

The UK workforce is more diverse than it has ever been, which is great news for organisations looking beyond political correctness to fair policies and working practices. Those looking to make a real difference. When diversity, equality, and inclusion (DEI) are taken seriously in the workplace, the business benefits from a larger and more diverse talent pool and a more positive corporate reputation. People are looking for an employer with good employment practices that are in evidence every day. And they want to feel valued at work. Employers now recognise the importance of DEI in recruiting and retaining the talent and skills that are essential for success.

Alongside practices that recognise every employee’s right to fair treatment it is important to create an open and inclusive culture. A culture where everyone feels valued, respects their colleagues, and knows that their contribution to the business is recognised. It’s all about valuing everyone in the organisation as an individual. Promoting and supporting diversity in the workplace is an essential element of good people management. However, it can be easy for an employer to overlook the dynamic of their workplace and fail to ensure it is both fair and respectful.

Whilst UK legislation covering age, disability, race, religion, sex, and sexual orientation among others sets minimum standards, an effective DEI strategy goes beyond this and looks to add value to an organisation. Evidence has shown that an effective strategy that goes beyond policy making, and is implemented throughout the business, contributes to positive employee wellbeing and engagement. Simply stating that you are a diverse and inclusive business isn’t enough. It’s not about having the right policies in place, but more about fostering a culture where everyone feels valued and supported to do their best work. And this should start at the top with management demonstrating inclusive behaviours in their language and actions. It’s essential to have an inclusive environment where everyone feels able to participate and achieve their potential. Low morale within your team can result in decreased productivity and potentially high employee turnover. A business should also reward and recognize employees through measurement systems that are fair and free from bias. When every employee sees they have opportunities, trust is cultivated and fairness in the workplace becomes the norm.

In terms of corporate reputation, an increasing number of employers now understand that their wider reputation goes way beyond monitoring their environmental impact. They have recognised that the overall image of an organisation is important to attracting and retaining employees. In other words, their approach, attitude to and incorporation of DEI practices. It has been proven that more diverse workplaces have advantages in recruiting top talent. Diversity improves employee morale and happiness, which leads to greater job satisfaction and reduced employee turnover.

Inclusion fosters positive behaviours where all the team feel that they belong, their opinions are trusted, and they are being relied upon to contribute. There are approximately 32.8 million people currently employed in the UK. So, that’s 32.8 million different points of view, ways of thinking and potential for new ideas just waiting to be tapped. Be the business where your leaders create an inclusive, diverse culture where every employee is inspired to better performance, which in turn will drive organisational competitive advantage.

For nearly 40 years HR & Payroll software experts, Frontier Software, have been successfully delivering systems to record, manage and analyse your people data. With unlimited data, history and easy to use reporting tools; statistics for diversity, equality and inclusion are at your fingertips in real time, any time. Contact us on 01276 456902 or email sales@frontiersoftware.com

Article originally published on London Loves Business December 2022