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7 Ways to Support Diversity in the Workplace

7 Ways to Support Diversity in the Workplace

Diversity in the workplace is an essential part of any modern business. Diverse workforces make your business stronger by creating engaged employees who see their personal values and goals reflected by the company they work for. Studies show that businesses with engaged employees are 21% more profitable. Here are some of the best ways that HR teams and business leaders can support racial diversity in their workplace.

1. Ensure fair opportunities and equal pay are offered to all employees

The first thing you can and should do is ensure that your company has fair opportunity and equal pay policies. Businesses can use analytics to conduct a pay equity audit to ensure employees are paid equally regardless of race, gender, or other identity factors. Also, take a look at your hiring and promotion practices. Make sure you’re interviewing diverse talent for these positions and that everyone at your company is on an equal playing field.

2. Create and empower ERGs

Employees Resource Groups are employee-led groups that help foster inclusivity and community. Often these groups are built around a shared characteristic like sexual orientation or religion. Implementing Employee Resource Groups is a great way to help employees feel like they can bring their authentic selves to work. Business leaders can empower ERGs to connect with the larger organization through events and initiatives, which helps encourage a company-wide culture of allyship.

3. Implement a diversity training program

The goal of a good diversity training program should be to increase awareness and appreciation of diversity and the varying identities colleagues bring to the table. “Training is absolutely necessary for senior leadership and people managers on equity, unconscious biases, and inclusive language. From a business perspective, creating a diverse workplace is a win in that there is a higher chance of attracting and retaining high-ranking talent,” says Keline Adams, Associate Director- DEI Projects at Penguin Random House.

4. Design your office for inclusivity

The goal of inclusive design is to increase the usability of your office for everyone, regardless of physical disability, age, race, or other characteristics. When designing your office, keep in mind that all employees have different needs, physical ability levels, and mental health concerns. Incorporating height adjustable desks, like our Raise or Series L 2s desks, or an ADA Compliant office pod, like our ADA Compliant Kolo 2, are great ways to set your office up for accessibility. Ensuring employees have access to private and recreational spaces is a great design-focused way to support mental health. Take stock of how your office functions and ensure it’s set up to support people of all identities.

5. Create inclusive policies

Conduct a comprehensive evaluation of your workplace policies and ask yourself if they really support all of your employees. Creating a diverse workplace may necessitate implementing new policies or initiatives at every level, from recruiting to performance evaluations. Examples of this can include allowing employees to take religious holidays your company might not officially observe, ensuring your office setup is inclusive by providing employees access to gender-neutral restrooms, and offering on-site daycare or flexible hours for parents.

6. Create an environment that supports open communication

It’s important to make sure your company has a culture of open communication so that employees feel comfortable coming forward to HR or business leaders. Provide a clear process for employees to bring grievances forward without retaliation. Also, consider implementing a non-hierarchal seating chart where executives sit among the workforce. Employees will feel more comfortable talking to someone they see every day rather than someone who sits behind a closed door. Head to to check out our solutions for the open-door office.

7. Go the extra mile to support employee mental health

In addition to providing a solid health insurance plan, employers can go the extra mile to support mental health. “A focus on incorporating psychological safety efforts and support into company policies is essential,” says Adams. Consider providing access to therapy apps and mindfulness training, allowing for flexible schedules, offering a meditation room, and subsidizing wellness benefits. These mental health-based initiatives will do wonders to support diverse colleagues at every level.

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