Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging

8 ways your team is being held back by unconscious bias at work

Unconscious bias at work continues to be a major problem for both employees and employers. 83% of employees who’ve experienced, or witnessed, bias(es) at work feel that they were subtle and indirect, or microaggressions.

This means that the person responsible may not know that what they were doing was even a form of unconscious bias.

But it’s still their responsibility to grow their awareness and fix it. Especially when almost two-thirds of employees believe their workplace is biased.

Bias can come in many forms, including:

  • Gender
  • Race
  • Religion
  • Sexuality
  • Age
  • Weight
  • Height 
  • Disability

Making assumptions about people based on any of these characteristics is a form of bias.

For example, assuming that someone over the age of fifty is less computer literate than a twenty-year-old.

This has a financial impact, too. The estimated cost of workplace bias is $64 billion per year. This is based on the cost of replacing more than 2 million US workers who leave due to unfairness and discrimination. 

It doesn’t factor in the legal costs involved when companies need to defend themselves. Or when they’re fined because of unlawful behavior.

So, reducing unconscious bias at work could save—and make—your company a lot of money.

How do you know if it’s a problem in your organization, though? Here are 8 examples of unconscious bias at work you may not have considered.

Thinking there’s no unconscious bias in your workplace

No one is perfect. And it’s far better to admit that, and accept that everyone is a work in progress, than to try to block it out. 

You can do all the training you like, but you still may fall prey to unconscious bias at work. Eradicating it requires active, conscious work. Especially when someone is new to noticing it. 

Eventually the good behaviors become habit, but that takes time. Just the same as learning those good habits did in the first place.

Interrupting colleagues in meetings

Did you know women are more likely to be interrupted in a meeting than men?

Next time you’re in a meeting, track how often each person, or demographic is interrupted. The results may surprise you.

The Woman Interrupted app detects how often men interrupt women during a meeting.

Its data discovered that in the US, men speak over women 1.43 times per minute. PER MINUTE.

In the UK, this goes up to 1.67 times per minute. In Malaysia it’s 6.66 times, it’s 7.22 times in Nigeria, and in Pakistan it’s 8.28 times.

Questioning expertise

How often do you challenge someone’s ideas in a meeting? Do you challenge everyone’s ideas equally?

Men often have their ideas questioned less, even if they have less experience.

Women, meanwhile, find that their ideas and expertise are questioned more often. And they’re more than twice as likely to have to provide evidence of their competence.

But when a man makes the same suggestion, people more readily get onboard. And give him all the credit. It’s one of the most common examples of unconscious bias at work.

You hired your employees because they have the required expertise for the job. So it’s important that their colleagues know, understand, and respect this. And that their behavior reflects it.

Assuming everyone is able-bodied

Not everyone likes to disclose that they have a disability to their employer. Many people with disabilities worry that their colleagues will treat them differently or think them less capable of doing their job if they share their condition.

Whether it’s asthma, allergies, chronic pain, neurodivergence, or something more visible, almost everyone has something.

Yet the default is still to assume that everyone is able-bodied.

So businesses work under that assumption, rather than making accommodations that improve everyone’s quality of life. This is just another way that unconscious bias at work can show up.

For example, does your office have an elevator?

Do you have a plan in place for if there’s a fire in the building and it’s unusable? Who’s going to help employees with mobility challenges down the stairs during an emergency?

Making assumptions about people’s health, and their needs, leads to a huge disconnect. And can mean that employees who don’t disclose their disabilities are more likely to leave because their workplace is unfit for purpose.

Thinking you understand someone else’s experiences

Unless you’ve lived through something, it’s really hard to understand what it’s like. For instance, living with a particular health condition or growing up in a totally different culture or location.

Having witnessed it helps, but it will never give you the full experience because you’re not in that person’s body or mind.

Thinking you know exactly what a person thinks or feels leads to making assumptions about what they need. Which can be risky territory.

Different people can experience the same situation completely differently. That’s why listening in the workplace is so important. You get a better understanding of someone’s experiences and needs, and can suggest further ways to accommodate them.

Not paying attention to promotions

Gallup’s Women and the Workplace study found that at almost 600 companies, for every 100 men promoted, only 85 women received promotions.

Women are also more slowly promoted in the workplace than men with the same level of education and experience. Such unequal promotion rates are a strong indicator of unconscious bias at work.

Telling women to just ask for a raise

I’m sure you’ve heard this before—that women just need to more actively ask for raises.

What if I were to tell you that women do, in fact, ask for raises…we’re just less likely to get them?

That’s what research from Australia showed.

Worse still, male hiring managers are more likely to dislike women who negotiate during the hiring process. It doesn’t bother them if the candidate is male. 

Female hiring managers treat both genders the same.

Assuming someone’s role

48% of African American women, and 47% of Latina women, report having being mistaken for administrative or custodial staff. Regardless of their actual role within the business.

Female managers and CEOs have even had people assume that their employees, or even husbands, are the leader in an organization, addressing the men first or even outright ignoring the women.


There are many ways that unconscious bias at work holds businesses back. Knowing the signs is key to taking the steps to eradicate it.

Does your business suffer from unconscious bias at work? If so, it’s time to make some changes, for both your people, and your bottom line.

If you want an easier way to implement your new programs and track progress, Workrowd can help. Reducing unconscious bias at work is no easy task, but our all-in-one tool suite can set you up for success. From launching and managing ERGs to collecting and analyzing employee feedback, we bring everything you need under one roof.

Ready to learn more? Visit us online or send us a message at

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging

7 ideas for tackling unconscious bias in hiring practices

Unconscious bias is everywhere. We may not always notice it, but that doesn’t stop it from doing damage. Which is why tackling unconscious bias in hiring practices couldn’t be more important.

We’re all guilty of it. And when we think we’re not…that’s usually when we’re more likely to be guilty of it.

Picture someone in the following professions:

  • Doctor
  • Pilot
  • Soldier

Did you picture men for all three of them?

That’s unconscious bias.

What about these professions?

  • Nurse
  • Kindergarten teacher
  • Hairdresser 

Thinking of a female?

Still unconscious bias.

It seeps into our lives without us even realizing it (hence why it’s called unconscious bias).

For us to mitigate its effects, and work toward eradicating it, we have to take conscious steps to change our environment and thought processes. And make an ongoing effort to reduce it.

One of the areas that’s especially important for HR to pay attention to is tackling unconscious bias in hiring practices. 

From focusing on different skillsets based on someone’s gender, to not interviewing someone at all because of their name, there are lots of ways that bias plays a role.

So, let’s look at some tips for tackling unconscious bias in hiring practices to set you up for success:

Check job descriptions for inclusive language

Words like “ambitious” or “competitive” have very different connotations from words like “empathetic.” Even “management” can have more masculine connotations.

It’s easy to let unconscious bias slip into the language we use (it is unconscious, after all).

That’s where using a tool that can help you spot unconscious bias in your job descriptions can be useful. It’s a great starting point for tackling unconscious bias in hiring practices.

Create a more diverse hiring team

If a hiring team contains just one woman, that team is less likely to hire another woman.

With a token female onboard, the men think they have to worry less about diversity.

But the woman is afraid that if she backs a female candidate, the men will think she’s playing favorites.

So what you actually need is more representation throughout the hiring process. Have at least two females on a hiring panel, two people of color, etc. This can set you up for greater success when tackling unconscious bias in hiring practices.

Implement anonymous hiring

In an eye-opening study, male and female managers thought male candidates would be more competent in a role.

This was more likely to happen at organizations that believed their profession no longer had any gender bias.

It was mostly men who felt this way, but the women who felt this way undervalued female employees just as much as their male counterparts.

A female applicant is 30% less likely to be invited to an interview than a man who’s just as qualified.

Anonymous hiring, often called blind hiring or recruitment, removes information that could inform hiring managers about candidate characteristics such as someone’s gender, race, age, or socioeconomic status.

Studies in Europe, Canada, and the US showed that this hiring technique improved the numbers of underrepresented hires in organizations that still struggled with tackling unconscious bias in hiring practices.

Test them before you question them

When you assess someone’s skills before interviewing them, you have concrete evidence of their abilities before you ask them any questions.

This makes it easier to judge them based on the quality of their work, not traits such as their gender, race, or even their likeability.

Likeability isn’t a measure of competence but it can have an impact on which candidate hiring managers prefer. This can work against people who don’t conform to societal stereotypes or who are neurodivergent.

Ask everyone the same questions

Women are more likely to be hired for their past achievements, while men can be hired for their potential. Meaning that questions can go in different directions.

Hiring managers can also end up with different expectations because of someone’s background.

When you ask everyone the same question, it creates a fairer playing field. You then have comparable data between applicants to help you make a more informed, data-driven decision.

Relying on facts rather than feelings is crucial to tackling unconscious bias in hiring practices.

Don’t ask about gaps in employment

Many people have gaps in their employment, whether that’s because they took time off to raise a family, travel, or because of an illness. 

Asking why there’s a gap in someone’s employment makes them feel like they did something wrong by not prioritizing work, living their life, or getting sick.

There’s also then the risk of discrimination against that person because they’re a parent, they choose not to be, or they have/had a long-term illness.

Set targets

Having targets—and tracking your progress toward achieving them—keeps everyone within your business accountable. It keeps diversity initiatives front of mind instead of them becoming an afterthought during your hiring process.

This data also means that you have hard evidence to prove how well you’re really performing, rather than operating on gut instincts and overconfidence. Which helps maintain motivation toward achieving the targets.

One trackable target you could set could be quotas. While many people dislike the idea of them, they do make a difference. Especially in the early days.

Quotas weed out incompetent applicants who benefit from their societal privilege, giving more opportunities to underrepresented talent.


Unconscious bias is an inevitable part of being human, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t fixable. Tackling unconscious bias in hiring practices requires active work to ensure the best candidate is hired regardless of demographics.

Some of the steps businesses can take to remove bias include blind applications, setting competence tasks, and asking everyone the same set of questions so that they can be compared fairly.

It’s also important to encourage employees to network with colleagues with whom they have things in common, especially when they’re new to the organization. This creates a sense of belonging in the workplace, helping ensure underrepresented hires stick around and don’t feel isolated because they don’t fit in.

Looking for ways to maintain your gains after tackling unconscious bias in hiring practices? Workrowd has the tools you need.

From fostering genuine connections between team members, to keeping everyone informed and included, our all-in-one platform can help you overcome bias to build a more engaged and productive workplace. Plus, with real-time analytics, you always know what’s working, and where you should focus your efforts.

Want to learn more? Visit us online or send us an email at

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging

10 innovative ways to reduce unconscious bias in the workplace

60% of employees feel that their workplace is biased. Worse, 39% of employees say that they experience unconscious bias in the workplace at least once a month. So some employees are experiencing it really frequently.

In a world that convinces itself it’s forward-thinking and progressive, this is a saddening (and eye-opening) statistic.

But what can organizations do to reduce unconscious bias in the workplace? Especially when we don’t even notice it’s there?

Ask underrepresented team members the first question

In meetings, white men get the floor longer than anyone else. They’re also the ones most likely to speak up. And tend to be the majority in the room.

When you ask someone else the first question, it gives them the confidence to speak out more.

It also gives other underrepresented team members the confidence to speak, too.

Back up a good point, regardless of who made it

If women make up just 20% or 40% of a group, their ideas are less than half as likely as a man’s to win approval. Women are also more likely to be interrupted.

Then there’s the chance that someone else will suggest the same thing further down the line and get all the credit for their idea.

So, pay attention to who’s speaking in meetings and, if you like their idea, offer them some support.

And if someone else tries to take credit for it, point out who suggested it first.

Bad habits only change when people call others out on their behaviors. Reducing unconscious bias in the workplace requires that we step up and have these tough conversations.

Use the same adjectives to describe everyone

Unconscious bias in the workplace can show up in how we talk about people. Sometimes, we use different words to describe employees based on their backgrounds. This reinforces unconscious biases in other people, too.

So the next time you write a performance review or give feedback, ask yourself if you’d use the same language to write about an employee from a different background.

If the answer is that you would write it differently, run it through a language checker to highlight the biases in your writing. This will make you aware of how you can improve your feedback. It will also give you things to keep in mind for next time.

Praise (and criticize) everyone equally

Men often praise other men more highly, while they criticize women more harshly. So, the next time you give feedback, keep that in mind. Consider whether you’re giving feedback to everyone in the same way.

Also, be specific in the feedback that you give.

A study of 200 performance reviews in a tech company found that women were more likely to receive vague praise like “you had a great year.” In contrast, men were given developmental feedback related to business outcomes. 

When women received developmental feedback, it was often related to their personalities rather than their competence and performance. When unconscious bias in the workplace shows up in this way, it can have major impacts, like affecting promotion rates.

Create mentorship schemes

Mentoring can have huge benefits for everyone involved, opening them up to new experiences and helping them grow their careers.

It’s unusual for a male to ask for a female mentor. When they do though, it can help them understand how they’re inadvertently contributing to the authority gap. 

Mentoring also allows them to develop more “feminine” traits that make for better leaders, such as empathy.

Provide group training

Training is one of the key ways to start bringing unconscious bias in the workplace to employees’ attention. It’s a foundational step. But without the others in this list, it’s too easily dismissed.

So, while you want employees to be aware of unconscious biases and what they look like, it’s important that you encourage and enforce the other steps, too —such as calling out unconscious bias in meetings. Training is meaningless without actionable steps.

Hold a speed networking event

If you have a large organization, a speed networking event can offer employees the opportunity to meet people they may not otherwise come across (even if it’s done virtually).

Employees get to experience the true diversity of your organization, while HR leaders can potentially spot any representation gaps in event sign-ups or your business.

Schedule the event, then have everyone sit at tables or put them into breakout rooms if you’re doing it virtually. Everyone has five minutes to talk to the person in front of them. 

Then, half the room moves on to the next table, while the other half stays seated. Keep going until you’ve reached full circle.

Encouraging employees to get to know each other better is a key step towards reducing unconscious bias in the workplace.

Host a book club

Reading, especially reading fiction, makes us more empathetic.

Men are less likely to read books written by women, yet women regularly read books written by men.

Suggesting books written by underrepresented authors introduces book club members to experiences other than their own. This allows them to see what life is like for people from different backgrounds. 

Discussing the book with their colleagues can help employees meet more people, consider other ways to interpret the story, and learn new skills.

Reading memoirs may also help, as they’re based on real-life experiences and can give employees concrete examples of biases.

Create employee groups

Employee groups enable everyone within your organization to network with people who have something in common with them. 

At the same time, these groups can also provide an opportunity to meet people who are different. 

For example, a group focused on people who want to learn leadership skills isn’t limited to employees from one demographic. 

Instead, it can provide an opportunity for everyone to share a common interest alongside experiences that impact their ability to use their leadership skills. 

How a person of color demonstrates leadership in the workplace—and how it’s received—can be different from how a white person shows and reacts to these things, for example.

Learning about these differences in a constructive environment can help reduce unconscious bias in the workplace.

Track the program’s success

No program is worth the time and effort unless you can measure its success. One of the most effective ways to do this is to monitor employee feedback. How do they really feel about your organization—and its diversity and inclusion efforts?

You can also use surveys to track levels of unconscious bias in the workplace. You can then design programming to help employees spot gaps in their own awareness.

And you can identify company-wide areas that require more training/initiatives.


We may not eradicate unconscious bias in the workplace during our lifetimes, but we can reduce it and set a better example for future generations. The steps in this post will help your organization decrease the impact unconscious bias has on employees without it feeling like a box-checking exercise.

Instead, you can turn diversity and inclusion into a new way of thinking, helping employees understand experiences other than their own.

Ready to start implementing some of these ideas to reduce unconscious bias in the workplace? Workrowd has the tools you need to succeed.

Our all-in-one platform makes it easy to launch employee groups, survey team members, and track your progress at a glance with automated analytics. Visit us online to learn more or email us directly at

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging

9 ways to build a more inclusive business in 2024

Inclusive businesses get more out of their employees. But to be a truly inclusive business, it’s important not to overlook the seemingly little things that can make a big difference.

Things like unconscious biases that require significant training to overcome; creating comfortable office environments for everyone; showing respect in meetings.

Read on to discover 9 ways to build a more inclusive business in 2024, including some that you may not have considered.

Stop talking over colleagues in meetings—and call people out when they do it

Did you know women are more likely to be talked over than men in meetings?

This can be hugely off-putting for women and result in them speaking less, even if they have great ideas. It also discredits them and damages their confidence.

In your next meeting, make a tally—or use an app like Women Interrupted—to track how many times women are interrupted in meetings compared to men. You might be surprised at the results.

This happens regardless of seniority, by the way.

Don’t believe me?

Sue Montgomery, a Quebec Councilor, knitted a scarf in meetings. She used red when men spoke and green when women spoke. Most of it was red.

And when I say “most,” I mean almost all of it. (You can see the scarf here.)

If you identify as male, it’s powerful when you speak up and tell your colleagues not to interrupt others. This is especially true if the person being interrupted is female or from another underrepresented group. It shows you respect them and their ideas—and expect their colleagues to do the same.

The more people who call others out on this behavior, the more likely it is to stop. Former interrupters may even start calling others out on it, too. It can start a chain of behavior change to create a much more inclusive business.

Adjust your office temperature based on employees’ preferences, not the 1960s

Modern office temperatures are based on a study from the 1960s. Done on white men wearing woolen suits.

Not only has clothing come a long way since then, but so has the workplace.

One of the reasons I have such huge issues with office working is because of how cold I have found every single office I’ve ever worked in. The females I worked with always felt the same but were less likely to speak out—unless I instigated it—because for them it was uncomfortable. For me it was a chronic pain trigger.

The male managers in the office always insisted they were fine. Sometimes they’d find a way to accommodate or compromise, other times we were basically told to suck it up.

You’re never going to please everyone, but if more than half of your team is complaining about the office temperature, and it’s bad for people with disabilities, it’s time to do something about it. You never know how many people are suffering silently because you haven’t created an inclusive business.

Provide space and support for new mothers

Going back to work after having a baby is tough. Breastfeeding can make it even more complicated.

For mothers who are still feeding their babies breastmilk, having a safe, private space to pump at the office can make life a lot less stressful.

While the law requires this in many places, a lot of workplaces still haven’t caught up. And often won’t until someone explicitly threatens to make an issue of it.

Don’t put new moms at your organization in this position. Build a more inclusive business and give them time and space to pump before they have to ask.


Just because you don’t see something as a problem, that doesn’t mean it isn’t. (See above examples.)

Everyone experiences the world—and the workplace—differently.

So, if an employee comes to you with something, pay attention to them. Don’t dismiss their queries or concerns just because you’ve never considered something an issue before. 

We’re all unique, and what impacts one person may not impact another. That doesn’t mean it isn’t a problem that needs solving.

Offer fidget toys

Fidget toys can help employees focus during meetings or when working on tedious tasks. They come in all shapes and sizes, from stress balls to pens to cubes.

I’ve been using fidget toys for just over a year now, often when I’m editing or on a call. They’re grounding, and help employees retain information in meetings. Allowing their use is a small way to ensure you’re cultivating an inclusive business.

Have a quiet hour

We’re constantly bombarded with notifications. It’s not great for our concentration levels or mental health. Especially if we’re doing a task that requires concentration. It can take us twenty minutes to get into a state of focus again. Is twenty minutes of quiet even possible in the modern world?

Allowing employees time and space where they can switch off and do some deep work helps them be more productive. 

It also creates a calmer work environment where more focused work gets done without the added stress of constant notifications and interruptions.

Captions in meetings

Many video tools now auto-generate closed captions in real time. This can make meetings more accessible to people who are hard of hearing or who have difficulty processing auditory information.

Turning on this option supports a more inclusive business environment and ensures everyone can get the most out of meetings. And you can get the most out of them as employees.

Put the PowerPoints and GIFs away

Did you know that busy PowerPoint presentations with too many slides, or excessive GIFs, can be distracting for some neurodivergent people?

Too much visual information can lead to sensory overload. Which means any neurodivergent people watching your presentation may feel too overwhelmed to focus on what you’re actually talking about.

So if you want a more inclusive business, use slides to show your key points and avoid flashing images.

Let employees work when they’re the most productive

The traditional nine-to-five doesn’t work for everyone.

I spoke to someone the other day who wakes up at 4:30am and goes to bed at 5pm. That works for her.

I get up around 9am and start work after lunch. That works for me.

Forcing myself to do work that requires deep focus first thing in the morning makes it harder for me to concentrate and means tasks take longer.

Leaning into our most productive times helps us get more done and fulfill our potential.


These are just a handful of ways you can show employees you appreciate them, attract top talent, and truly build a more inclusive business.

If you’re looking to step up your inclusion work this year and ensure every employee is set up for success, Workrowd can help. Our all-in-one tool suite enables you to launch new inclusive business initiatives with ease, and measure the results in real-time.

Sound useful? Visit us online to learn more or send us a note at

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging

6 challenges women face in the workplace and how you can help

Female leaders are leaving companies at the highest rate ever. For every female director who gets promoted to the next level, two female directors leave. It’s not all that surprising when you consider the wide array of challenges women face in the workplace.

These challenges don’t just hold women back, though. They can have a major negative impact on your bottom line as well. Let’s take a look at some of the challenges women face in the workplace, and what you can do about them:

We’re outnumbered

Just one in four C-suite leaders is female. And only one in 20 is a woman of color.

For every 100 men who are promoted from entry-level roles to manager positions, only 87 women are promoted, and only 82 women of color are promoted.

As a result, men significantly outnumber women at the manager level—and women can never catch up. Uneven promotion rates are often both a component and result of challenges women face in the workplace.

We’re perceived as less qualified

Women in leadership are more likely than men to have a colleague imply they’re not qualified.

And they’re twice as likely as male leaders to have someone mistake them for a more junior employee.

And they’re more likely to report that a personal characteristic—like being female or a parent—has played a role in them being denied or passed over for a raise, promotion, or chance to get ahead. Having multiple intersecting identities only adds to the challenges women face in the workplace.

Our DEI work is ignored

Women leaders do more to support employee wellbeing and diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI).

But 40% of them don’t feel the organization acknowledges this work in performance reviews. That’s a lot of time and energy spent on work that no one recognizes. And this is one of the challenges women face in the workplace that could make it harder to advance.

Women are also 1.5 times as likely as men at their level to have left a previous job because they wanted to work for a company with a stronger commitment to DEI. Given the stats, it’s hardly surprising.

We’re stretched thinner

Female leaders are more overloaded than men in leadership. 43% of them experience burnout compared to 31% of men at the same level.

We get less support

Women of color get less support, but are more ambitious. 41% of them want to be top executives, despite the challenges women face in the workplace. That’s compared to 27% of white women.

We want more workplace flexibility 

Just 10% of women want to work primarily on-site. As a result, women are more likely to stay at, or join, a company that offers remote or hybrid work options.

Working remotely some or all of the time isn’t just about the flexibility, though.

Women who work this way experience fewer microaggressions and higher psychological safety. This decrease is even more significant for women of color, LGBTQ+ women, and women with disabilities.

So, what can you do?

Those stats are pretty upsetting, right? So, what can you do?

To overcome the challenges women face in the workplace, it requires a team effort. Everyone has to do their part, regardless of gender. Or seniority.

Leaders must set an example. Everything from how they talk about diversity, equity, and inclusion, to if they challenge their own unconscious biases, can impact the behavior of their employees.

Challenge the stigma

It’s only when people step up and challenge stigmas that others notice their unconscious biases. It’s not always a comfortable conversation, but it’s an important one.

Can you hold unconscious bias training?

Or get a senior leader to talk about their experience facing bias?

The stories told by senior leadership can stick with employees. Especially when you factor in that we process—and remember—stories better than statistics.

When leaders share their challenges, it makes them feel more accessible to employees. It can also turn their problems from abstract concepts that happen to someone else, into tangible problems that employees should look out for.

Encourage DEI initiatives (and recognize those who run them)

What do your DEI programs look like? Really?

And, more importantly, do you recognize the hard work put in by the people who run them?

It’s important to recognize any extra work done by employees, whether that’s overtime, running an employee group, organizing charity work, or something else. This makes them feel valued and appreciated—and means they’re more likely to stay.

Consider a quota

I know, quotas sound questionable. But they work. And they don’t mean that incompetent women get in; in fact, they weed out incompetent men.

So, if you’re serious about helping eliminate the challenges women face in the workplace, is it worth giving quotas a go? Even if only temporarily?

Provide support (and listen to your employees)

Do you listen to employees when they give you feedback? Or do you collect it then forget it?

It’s important to act on the feedback employees give you, particularly if there are recurring patterns.

Making employees feel heard, and reducing the sources of their stress, can help prevent burnout.

Which, over time, can also reduce the money you lose to sick leave and employee churn.

Offer flexible working

Flexible working is more inclusive regardless of what your DEI goals are. It can also help address a number of the challenges women face in the workplace with one change.

Could you offer more flexible hours? A hybrid approach? Or even remote work opportunities?

Watch your words

The language we use creates a particular narrative in our minds.

If we spend a lot of time with someone, or we’re in a position of power, those words can also influence how people see us, themselves, and the rest of the world.

So, while you may feel fine using a word like “master” when you talk about “mastering a craft” consider the masculine undertones and the associations with slavery. Because while you may not notice them, words like that can and do affect your workplace culture. 


The only way talented women will stop leaving companies en masse is if something changes.

That requires businesses to wake up to the challenges women face in the workplace and start supporting them how they want, not how businesses want.

Changes like offering flexible working and using inclusive language show employees you’re committed to making a difference in this area. This can change how they do things, too. But it has to start at the top.

If you’re ready to build a more equitable workplace, you need the right tools. Workrowd empowers you to target challenges women face in the workplace with training, ERGs, resources, and more.

Plus, our real-time analytics ensure you can track your progress over time, as you benefit from a more diverse and inclusive workforce.

Want to learn more? Visit us online or send us a note at

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging

Your return to office policy is hurting your DEI efforts – here’s why

Back in the dark pandemic days most of us would rather forget, those of us who dislike office-based working rejoiced when jobs moved out of the office and into the home. We were blissfully unaware at that point what a battle the return to office conversation would become.

Back then, we all thought that the transition to remote work would mean a massive shift in how businesses operated. We thought they’d finally understand the importance of remote working for employees’ mental and physical health, diversity, and business success.

After all, working from home doesn’t make employees less productive. It makes them more productive.

I recently spoke to a former colleague who said that the company now works mostly remotely, with occasional in-office time.


Because they found employees worked better when they worked remotely. At the same time, they did still need some people around for face-to-face interactions. In this situation, hybrid working was the perfect compromise.

So then, why is there a mass return to office going on? 

Even Zoom, the very company that enabled so many of us to work remotely during the pandemic, has mandated a return to office. 

There seems to be a discrepancy between what employees want, and how much managers trust them. 

But if managers don’t trust their employees, why did they hire them in the first place? 

I mean, I know places like this still exist. But do they have to make it so obvious? It’s not going to help their future hiring efforts with so many people now wanting to work remotely.

This is especially true when it comes to hiring talent from underrepresented communities. Here’s why mandating a return to office can be especially harmful to your diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts.

Not everyone works well in an office

There are very few people who concentrate better in an office. Those people make up around 3% of the population.

There are some parts of office-based work—like the background noise, or the overhead lights, or even using the wrong equipment—that we may not consciously realize impact our productivity. Especially if we’re used to blocking them out or just sucking it up.

But, over time, the impact compounds. It reduces how much employees can concentrate, and therefore how much work they get done.

When you force a return to office where everyone has to work in the same environment, sacrifices and compromises have to be made. 

Which means that there’s a high chance some employees will leave. 

For many people now, remote or hybrid working is a non-negotiable requirement when they job hunt. Which means if they already work for you and you change the rules, they’re not going to think twice about leaving you in their rear-view mirror.

It’s impossible to accommodate everyone’s needs in an office

Health and safety regulations, while important to follow, are based on what fits most people, not everyone.

We all have unique needs from our work environment. It’s the same way that some of us have different dietary requirements.

I once had a colleague who got relentless migraines because of how bright the new LED lights were. But HR insisted that the white lights were better for our long-term eye health. His migraines begged to differ.

Truth is, it’s impossible to accommodate everyone’s needs, especially in a larger business. Some people will always slip through the cracks for one reason or another. Which isn’t fair on anyone, and makes return to office a bad approach if you want to maintain and increase diversity.

Underrepresented talent is at a disadvantage in an office

When I asked Workrowd CEO Rachel Goor her thoughts on the current mass return to office, she said:

While it’s often overlooked in return to office discussions, where employees work actually has huge implications for DEI progress. For example, being in the office creates more pressure to conform with racially biased workplace expectations. It disadvantages caregivers who have to juggle commuting and being away from home on top of their familial responsibilities. It makes it more difficult for people with disabilities to access the necessary accommodations to thrive. Bottom line: if you want to recruit and retain talent from underrepresented communities, don’t mandate a return to office.

Offices can be rife with judgment and cliques. Whether this is conscious or not, it reduces psychological safety and makes the environment less welcoming for everyone. Societal pressures take up a lot of subconscious headspace that can have long-term impacts on someone’s emotional health.

Offering training around these issues can help. Ultimately though, employees need to want to understand and improve for it to make a difference.

Forcing employees to work in an office shrinks your talent pool

If you only hire people who can commute into the office, you significantly shrink your talent pool. Not just in terms of location, but in terms of skill set and experience, too. 

That means your competitors who accommodate remote work are more likely to find the best person for the job. 

After all, what are the odds the best candidate lives just down the road from you? Pretty slim.

Many candidates from underrepresented communities can’t, or don’t want to, work in an office. A single parent may struggle to be in the office by nine in the morning, but they could drop their children off at school and still get back to their desk at home on time.

With the average commute at around an hour, that’s a big chunk of someone’s day dedicated to traveling.

Office-based work simply introduces more variables

People want a better work-life. Remote or hybrid working provides that in a way a full-scale return to office never could.

A wheelchair user might not fit in your elevator, or be able to climb the stairs. If they work in their own space though, they can still get to their desk to work.

Spray air fresheners, or employees’ excessive uses of deodorant or perfume, may be unsuitable for someone with asthma or COPD. At home though, they have control of the atmosphere and what is (and isn’t) sprayed in it. Without you having to put policies in place to enable them to breathe.

I could go on, but you probably get my point. There are so many variables you have to juggle in an office. It’s never going to be as inclusive or as welcoming as allowing someone to work in their own space.


Some jobs, like manufacturing, require employees to be in a physical location. Office-type work generally doesn’t. And most people don’t like it either.

Foregoing your physical office space saves you money that you can spend on other areas of your business. This could include growing your DEI efforts through hiring, training, and employee engagement.

So why not boost your employer brand by giving employees what they want? If you’re ready to overcome misguided notions about return to office and build an engaged and inclusive hybrid and remote culture, Workrowd can help.

With a one-stop shop for all your employee programs, groups, and events, you can drive real belonging from day one, no matter where or when people work. Organizing your resources and announcements through a central hub saves time and ensures everyone is always on the same page.

Plus, real-time analytics empower you with the data you need to maximize your resources. Sound interesting? Visit us online to learn more, or drop us a note at

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging

Family-friendly workplace policies to drive inclusion for your team

While it would certainly make life easier if the only thing your employees had to worry about was their job responsibilities, that’s rarely the case. Team members have hobbies, friends, and perhaps most importantly, families to think of, too. Accordingly, it’s never too early to start implementing some family-friendly workplace policies.

Caregivers, whether parents or those supporting older relatives, bring a unique set of skills to the table. They’re great problem solvers, negotiators, and communicators.

However, family commitments can make it harder for these individuals to find a job. They’re often not offered the flexibility they need to succeed at work.

So, if you’d like to make your organization more welcoming to this rich talent pool, here are some tips for implementing more family-friendly workplace policies:

How to create more family-friendly workplace policies

Ask your employees what they want

The scope of a team member’s caregiving role will influence what they need, and can provide, at work. The best way to find out what those needs are is to ask your employees. 

You could create a survey, do a focus group, or even ask in Slack or on Workrowd.

The more places you ask, the more information you can get. Of course, as a result, the better your future family-friendly workplace policies will be.

Research what others are doing 

You do research to find out what your competitors are doing and what the key to their success is. So, why not do the same for family-friendly workplace policies?

You need to know what others are doing—and if it’s working. That way, you can streamline your own processes and avoid the pitfalls others have faced.

Bring in a consulting firm

Another way to streamline creating family-friendly workplace policies is to bring in a company that specializes in helping businesses implement effective practices.

This is more expensive than doing the research yourself, so it may not be suitable for a smaller company. That said, it can save larger companies a lot of time and effort that they could use on other things.

Trust your employees

Creating more inclusive and family-friendly workplace policies requires trusting your employees to do their jobs.

Since everyone works in different ways, the more rigid company rules are, the less likely you are to find someone who’s compatible with that way of working. And the less likely you are to benefit from increased company diversity.

To implement things like flexible working or remote working, you need to trust your employees.

You need to trust them to not let you down, to perform at their best, and to be upfront and honest with you.

For that to happen you need a culture where employees feel trusted and where they trust you.

Trust and respect work both ways. If employees have even the slightest whiff of something being off, or feel like they’ll get judged for something, then they’re not going to be as open with you or their colleagues and it will negatively impact your company culture.

Ways to make your workplace more family friendly

Implement flexible working…yesterday

There’s no better way to say you’re a family-friendly company than with a flexible working policy. 

It tells caregivers that you don’t mind if they need to come in later or leave earlier because of caring responsibilities. So long as they get the work done, that’s what matters.

Trust your employees to work remotely

Do you allow employees to work remotely?

Flexible work is one thing. Allowing employees to work at home, or where they’re most productive that isn’t the office, can make a huge difference to how inclusive your workplace is—and how much money you lose to your employees’ childcare and other responsibilities.

Remote work allows caregivers more time to spend with their children or relatives. Being able to work from home means they’re not losing an hour or more each day to their commute. 

They can use their lunch break for quality time with family members when they’re home. Or, even for a little bit of much-needed time to themselves.

Update your parental leave policy

Does your parental leave policy only cover new mothers? Or does it cover new fathers, too? What about trans or non-binary individuals?

Your parental leave policy should be inclusive and not make assumptions about who will return to work first. It should also consider parents’ needs as well as legal requirements.

Consider, too, your policies for parents of newly adopted children. What do they need? How can you help them?

Offer family healthcare

When employees know that their family’s healthcare is covered as well as their own, it can make things a lot less stressful if someone gets sick or even just needs a new pair of glasses. 

Family healthcare is a simple way to show employees that you don’t just view them as someone who produces for your company, but you value them and their family’s long-term health as well.

Provide family medical leave

Sometimes someone gets sick and it’s not possible to work remotely and care for them at the same time.

Offering some sort of family medical leave, where people can look after their relative without worrying about work, or using up their paid time off, gives them the head space they need to help their relative.

Subsidize childcare

Childcare can get expensive really fast.

I live and work in the UK. Some of our friends struggle to work even though they want to because childcare is just so expensive.

If you can subsidize employees’ childcare costs, so that their child can enjoy educational and fun activities while they’re at work, or when they need a break, it helps your employees focus, and it benefits the next generation.


Family-friendly workplace policies make your business more inclusive. This attracts a wider range of candidates and means you get to benefit from the unique assets caregivers can bring to your business.

Being family-friendly could even be a differentiator for your business that you use to grow your employer brand and customer base.

If you’re ready to better support parents and other caregivers with more family-friendly workplace policies, having a central hub for employee info is a great place to start. With Workrowd, it’s easy to ensure employees always have the information they need to make the best choices for themselves and their families.

Plus, the platform offers an easy way to manage and measure employee resource groups for parents and caregivers and other effective support initiatives. Want to learn more? Visit us online or send us a note at

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging

8 employee event ideas to deepen belonging for your workforce

You know that keeping employees engaged and connected can go a long way towards driving retention. Events are obviously a great way to do this, but who has time to constantly come up with new employee event ideas?

40% of people feel isolated at work. I’ve been there, and it’s a horrible feeling that doesn’t just impact your working life, but your home life, too. Your mental health. Your physical health. And even your ability to enjoy your hobbies when you’re not at work.

When employees feel like they belong in the workplace, it can lead to a 56% increase in job performance, a 50% decrease in turnover risk, and a 75% reduction in sick days. 75%!

For a company with 10,000 employees, this would result in an annual savings of over $52 million.

Just let those numbers sink in for a moment.

$52 million.

All from employees feeling like they belong where they work, instead of feeling like an outsider in the place where they spend most of their time. Coming up with employee event ideas seems like a pretty small lift when you consider that kind of payoff, right?

The relationship between employee events and diversity and inclusion

Businesses in the US spend almost $8 billion per year on diversity and inclusion initiatives. Unfortunately, they often fail to include one key element in these efforts: belonging.

To fully reach your DEI goals, you need to create an environment where employees of all backgrounds and identities feel included.

There’s no point educating employees on what diversity looks like if you don’t take steps to make your workplace more inclusive. This could include offering ramps and elevators as well as stairs to your office, or transcripts for video meetings. Small changes like these can add up to make a big difference to your employee experience.

As many businesses embrace remote or hybrid working, it’s important to find alternative ways to ensure employees can connect with their colleagues.

One simple option for fostering connection and increasing employee belonging is with these employee event ideas.

Employee event ideas to drive deeper belonging for your workforce

Here are some employee event ideas you could try in your business:


Employee resource groups (ERGs) offer a simple, employee-led way for team members to connect with coworkers who share their interests or backgrounds. 

When people have someone at work who shares commonalities with them, they’ll feel more connected to what they’re doing and their place of work. They’ll feel less like an outsider and more like they’re a part of something. They’ll also have someone to go to with concerns that may be related to their disability, race, gender, religion, etc.

Of course, your organization’s employee resource groups can also be a great source of employee event ideas if you’re stuck. Don’t hesitate to consult and partner with them!

Team retreats

When working remotely, having the opportunity to meet up with colleagues every few months can re-engage employees and help generate new ideas.

I’ve seen some businesses organize retreats in different places every time. This allows employees to experience different cultures while getting to know their colleagues. It’s a great way to introduce them to other ways of working, scenery, culture, and even food!


A hackathon is a challenge for a group of employees where they have to put together a product or service in a set amount of time. There’s usually a theme of some sort, whether it’s vague like “time” or something more specific, like a scheduling app.

Internal or external hackathons test employees’ skills in a fun way. They also appeal to people’s creative and competitive sides.

Hackathons can be an effective way for teams to bond outside of their day-to-day tasks. Or for new teams to form and get to know each other.

You can also reward employees for their hard work with prizes at the end. Hackathons are one of those employee event ideas that’s often overlooked, but can make a big impact.

Escape rooms

Escape rooms build team bonds, develop problem-solving abilities, and play to people’s strengths. They can even help employees discover new skills along the way!

Movie nights

Pop culture is a really good way to bond with other people. You’ll never find a movie that everyone loves, but watching something together can spark conversations and new connections.

Sometimes people’s tastes might surprise you, too, or you might introduce them to a whole new genre.

Volunteer days

Employee volunteering programs are becoming increasingly popular. They’re a good way to boost employee morale and engagement.

If you have several employees who live near each other, you could organize for them to all volunteer at the same place on the same day. That way they’ll get to know each other while working together for a common cause.

Partnering with community-based organizations is a great way to tap into a steady stream of new employee event ideas to engage your team.


Whether it’s a lunch and learn, or an afternoon during a team retreat, offering classes is a great way to encourage employee bonding and teach people something new.

Some options include:

  • Poetry or spoken word
  • Painting 
  • Pottery

Go for something that has a low barrier to entry and is accessible to as many employees as possible.

And remind them that it’s meant to be fun—no perfectionism or pressure required! 

Team meals

Meals are a great, low-effort way to get to know someone. If you don’t know what to talk about, just talk about the food!

When booking somewhere, look for a restaurant that can cater to individuals’ nutritional needs or preferences. There’s nothing worse than turning up to a restaurant to find that their only vegan option is a side of fries, or they don’t even know what gluten-free means.

Part of creating a culture of belonging means considering people’s dietary needs, too, even if you don’t have any requirements yourself.


Effective employee event ideas come in many forms. The common factor though, is that they help employees of all backgrounds feel appreciated and included in the workplace. 

This has huge benefits for businesses of all sizes, reducing sick time and increasing profits. 

It also increases the impact of any diversity and inclusion initiatives, because it’s not just talking about diversity and inclusion, it’s actively creating it.

If you’re ready to free up more time for dreaming up awesome employee event ideas, and spend less time juggling all the logistics, Workrowd has your back. With all the tools you need to market, manage, and measure your events and programs, you and your employees can enjoy the ease of having everything in one place.

Sound interesting? Drop by our site to learn more, or send us a note at

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging

Inclusive language examples to drive belonging in the workplace

Building a culture of belonging in the workplace is important if you want to attract and retain top talent. The words we use can play a big role in ensuring people feel included. It can sometimes be hard to ‘get it right’, though, especially if you’re not sure what inclusive language examples look like.

In the last few years, there’s been a big push toward using more inclusive language in the workplace. This isn’t an easy change to manage, but it can lead to huge rewards.

For instance, consider that millennials are one of the most racially and ethnically diverse generations in US history. By 2025, members of this group will make up 75% of the global workforce.

And 83% of millennials are actively engaged at work when they feel their employer creates an inclusive culture.

Given the consequences of a disengaged workforce, language usage could be your first step towards creating a more diverse, welcoming, and inclusive business.

Getting employees’ feedback on language usage is a good way to discover what potential words and phrases could be problematic.

Once you’ve done that, here are some tips along with inclusive language examples that will help drive belonging in your workplace:

Communicate in plain language

It doesn’t matter who your target audience is. Plain language, and avoiding jargon or acronyms, will always make what you say and write more inclusive.

It also makes things easier for people to understand. So then they come to you with fewer questions, allowing everyone to spend more time on higher-value tasks.

Using plain language in your marketing could even increase your website conversions because it’s easier for people to grasp.

Use gender-neutral terms

“They” has been around as a gender-neutral term for hundreds of years. Yet it’s one of the inclusive language examples that continues to face resistance.

When you use “he” in cases where you don’t actually know the person’s gender, it can make the reader uncomfortable and put them off your business.

I read a lot of nonfiction, and it pains me every time I see a book use “he” to mean a single person whose gender we don’t know.

Sometimes those books split it between “he” and “she,” or even just use “she,” but what about non-binary folks? What if you don’t get the balance right?

It’s easier, and more inclusive, to use “they.”

Using words like “guys” to mean a group of people is another subtle way to gender the conversation.

It subconsciously implies that the default gender is male, again further isolating your audience. There are lots of different alternatives to this, including “folks,” “gang,” or “people.”

Using gendered terms like “waitress” instead of “server” makes assumptions about someone’s gender, which is isolating and unfair.

Language reflects culture. Changing the words and phrases we use changes cultural perceptions and attitudes.

It starts with people being aware of the connotations of what they say, and consciously changing the words they use. Incorporating some of the inclusive language examples above is a great first step.

Ask people their pronouns

It never hurts to ask someone what their pronouns are.

Sure, we can make assumptions, but that can lead to awkward atmospheres that make people uncomfortable. This is true for both the person who assumed incorrectly, and the person on the receiving end.

In the latter case, they’re going to feel less like they belong and can be themselves in the workplace. This can negatively impact their mental health and make them more likely to leave.

With belonging in the workplace being so important, asking someone their pronouns is a simple way to show people that you do want them to feel like they belong, whether they’re working with you for five minutes or fifty years.

Consider the connotations or origins of a word, phrase, object, or action

There are some words and phrases that were once considered innocuous but are now problematic.

This is partly because the world is more diverse. However, it’s also because more people are aware of the origins of these things and why we should avoid them.

Recently, there was controversy in the UK when a pub had dolls with racial connotations on display. While displaying them isn’t technically illegal, making people uncomfortable through your words or actions in this way is.

Even though the offensive dolls were confiscated, the pub owners continue to defend their actions. They even acquired more dolls to display.

As a consequence, the pub received a lot of negative press. One of the UK’s most respected pub guides even removed them from their listings.

We should always be questioning and challenging previously held attitudes and beliefs. There are always ways to improve processes and make more people feel welcome.

Failing to question these attitudes and beliefs can lead to negative press that can impact your business in the short- and long-term. Incorporating more inclusive language examples is important, but eliminating exclusive words, phrases, and of course actions, is just as essential.

Be mindful of the language around disabilities

Saying that you’re blind because you didn’t see something can be offensive to people who are visually impaired.

There are some people who wouldn’t find this offensive, like my nan, who was visually impaired. When it comes to inclusive language though, it’s much better to err on the side of caution and inclusivity rather than divisiveness and upset.

Likewise, there are some people who dislike the word disability and prefer to use “differently abled.” If you’re unsure which to choose, ask your employees who face long-term health challenges which term they prefer.

Adopting the social disability model can help, too. This states that it isn’t people themselves who are disabled, it’s society that disables them. This puts the onus on society, and businesses, to accommodate those disabilities, rather than forcing those with disabilities to change themselves.


You don’t have to get all of this right 100% of the time. You just have to be open to feedback and learning, and do your best to utilize these inclusive language examples when the occasion calls for it. 

When you’re open to feedback and learning, you’re more likely to not repeat the same mistakes. You’ll also create the inclusive culture that you want your business to have—and that you and your business can benefit from.

If you’re looking to build a more inclusive organization, Workrowd can help. Our all-in-one tool suite makes it easy for your people to find their people from day one.

Plus, it’s a breeze to share resources like a list of inclusive language examples so that the whole team sees it rather than just getting lost in people’s inboxes. If you want to create a more inclusive culture with less work, visit us online or send us a note at We’d love to connect.

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging

6 ways to create a more accessible and inclusive hiring process

Diversity matters. It matters so much that 37% of candidates want to know what a business is doing about diversity. If you can’t answer that question, you risk losing out on talent. One of the first steps is to ensure that you have an inclusive hiring process.

So, what can you do to make your hiring process more accessible and inclusive?

Use clear language in job descriptions

The clearer your job description is, the better the fit any candidates who apply for the role will be.

Think of your job description as a way for candidates to self-select. They can use it to decide if it’s exactly what they do—or don’t—want from their next role.

Also consider the fact that most people applying for a job will look at multiple jobs in multiple places.

This can be tiring and stressful.

If you cut the fluff and tell candidates exactly what they need to know in easy-to-understand language, they’re going to associate you with a better experience from the get-go.

This means they’re more likely to apply, and be enthusiastic about working for you.

Be inclusive in your language usage

I was reading a job description the other day that listed the company’s brand values. The first was “diversity.” The third was “craftsmanship.”

While it’s only three letters, the use of “man” inside of the word does influence the connotations of the role—and the company.

Sometimes it’s better to use a few extra words and be more inclusive over choosing the shortest phrase.

HBR found that 40% of employees don’t feel they belong at work. If you want to make them feel like they do from the start, the language you use matters. This is true on both a conscious and subconscious level. 

There are lots of tools out there that you can run your job descriptions through to ensure that they’re aligned with an inclusive hiring process.

Nobody is perfect when it comes to this stuff. What matters is that you’re open to improving and adjusting based on feedback.

Make the application process easy and accessible

The clunkier or more confusing your application process is, the more candidates you’ll lose in this early stage.

And this won’t help you weed out candidates from the start, it’ll just annoy everyone who might be interested. Meaning many will take their valuable time and skills elsewhere.

Does your application process require a resume, a cover letter, and candidates to manually enter their job history? This unnecessary repetition could be losing you candidates. If you have their resume, you have their job history. They shouldn’t need to give it to you twice!

To make for an even more accessible and inclusive hiring process, consider optimizing your application form for mobile. 

If you’re not optimizing for the mobile experience, you’re probably missing out on people. For instance, the ones who may be casually browsing on their morning commute or during a break. 

If they can’t apply on their phone, it may make them question your commitments to accessibility. They may also question how modern and forward-thinking your business is. This could ultimately put them off the role and your business as a result.

Ask for what you need and nothing else

If you’re not interested in someone’s gardening adventures, don’t ask for information on their personal life in the application process. Make sure that in the application, you’re asking for exactly what you need and nothing else.

Almost 60% of job seekers will quit an online job application halfway through if it’s too long or complicated. That’s a lot of potential hires you risk missing out on from one step.

Say you’re hiring a copywriter. Is it more efficient to ask for samples of their writing that you can analyze to see if they can adapt to your company’s tone of voice, over asking about their formal qualifications?

What about some statistics about results they’ve helped businesses achieve in the past?

Sometimes these things can get lost in favor of more obvious criteria that don’t matter when you’ve got proven experience. For instance, someone’s educational background is a big one.

Many people I know who now work in marketing don’t have a traditional marketing background or marketing degree (myself included). Those things can be nice to have but don’t guarantee someone will bring you the results that you want.

Ensuring you’re not eliminating people based on irrelevant criteria is a key factor in building a more inclusive hiring process.

Make the assessment process inclusive

One of my pet peeves is when businesses say they’re inclusive but don’t have evidence to show that they are. More and more people are starting to see through this tokenism.

Saying that you’re inclusive, and actually being inclusive, are two very different things and require two very different approaches.

My friend is job hunting right now, and they were given a choice between an initial phone call or a video interview during the early stages.

In a later stage, the hiring manager sent them the interview questions in advance so that they could prepare.

The company even sent over a flyer explaining their process and sharing tips like how to handle interview nerves.

In the flyer, they also shared that some of their best employees didn’t get the job the first time around!

How can you make this level of inclusive hiring a reality at your organization?

To find ways to implement more inclusive hiring practices, it’s important to consider how other people—including people you haven’t met yet and who have a different background/worldview from you—experience the world.

Explain your interview process upfront

Interviews can be stressful. If you can explain to people what your interview process is upfront, it can alleviate some of that stress.

Another thing you can do to lower interview stress and be more accessible to neurodiverse employees, is provide interview questions before the interview.

Needing extra time to prepare isn’t a reflection of someone’s intelligence, or even how fast their brain works.

Providing the questions allows candidates to find relevant achievements from previous roles, statistics that show what they’re capable of, and anecdotes that showcase their skills.

This extra time to prepare means you’ll get better quality answers and can make a more informed decision. 


Some of the things on this list may seem insignificant or finicky, but they’re small things that help you stand out from your competitors as a better place to work.

It’s embracing things like inclusive language that will help you achieve your diversity and inclusion targets. You’ll also reap the benefits that you get from having a more inclusive working environment.

Aside from a bit of effort to get there, there’s essentially no downside to transitioning towards a more inclusive hiring process.

If you’re looking for ways to extend your inclusive hiring practices through into your employee experience, Workrowd can help. With a one-stop shop for all your employee groups, programs, and events, it’s easy for everyone to get fully immersed in your company culture from day one.

Plus, with automated data collection and analytics, you always know what’s building real belonging for team members and driving ROI for the business. Check us out online or write us at to learn more.