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We all want to do our best for diversity and inclusion, but what more can you – or your organisation – do?

Take our quick quiz to see how you stack up so far and what further steps you might take. We’ll give you tips on how to get started and, don’t worry, we’re not recording your answers.

1. Has your organisation signed the IP Inclusive EDI Charter?

Well done. You’re part of an ever-growing community that’s trying to make a difference. Click here to see who else has signed.

The Charter is a public commitment that your organisation will stick to the principles of equality, diversity and inclusion in all aspects of employment practice, especially recruitment and retention, career development and workplace ethos. By making that commitment – and doing it publicly – you set yourself a bar and you should also think about how you can be held to account. Signing the Charter is not a substitute for action. Find out more here and see the many other organisations who are signatories already.

 

Signing the Charter should be a big deal for any organisation – a commitment that everyone should know about. Check the list of signatories to find out if your organisation has signed. If they haven’t, find out more about it and, if they have, maybe the organisation could be doing more to raise awareness?

2. Does your organisation have an EDI (equality, diversity and inclusion) officer?

Well done. It’s important that they are sufficiently senior in the organisation to make things happen. If you’re the EDI Officer for your organisation, perhaps you’d be happy to support others? If so, please contact us.

EDI is not just about doing the right thing (although that should be reason enough). It’s also good business sense. Having a senior member of the management team for whom EDI is a critical part of their role ensures changes can be made. To get more advice, feel free to contact us, or check out the resources we provide to help organisations improve their diversity and inclusivity.

If your organisation does have an EDI Officer, but you don’t know who they are, perhaps the role isn’t taken seriously enough? It’s important that they’re a senior member of the management team and that their work is known about and understood throughout the organisation. For further advice, do get in touch. 

3. Does your organisation have an EDI policy?

That’s great. Make sure everyone knows about it and there are mechanisms in place to ensure it’s followed.

It’s important to have an agreement within your organisation – one that everyone knows about and accepts – about how to embed EDI in the way you work and recruit. Take a look at our sample EDI policy and read this helpful blog about getting started to create your own.

If an EDI policy is worth having, it’s worth everyone in the organisation knowing about it. If your senior management team isn’t making everyone aware of it, then it’s not doing its job and you need to create an effective policy and consider how to ensure everyone buys into it. 

4. Does your organisation have its own diversity and inclusion (D&I) committee or something similar?

Great. It’s important that it has representatives from across the organisation and provides a safe and open forum for issues to be discussed constructively. 

A D&I committee (aka forum, group, etc) is a key way to ensure voices from across the organisation are heard in a safe and open environment, which is essential to ensuring your EDI policy is followed through. This blog is about doing just that.

If you don’t know, then the answer is probably no. A D&I committee (aka forum, group, etc) is a key way to ensure voices from across the organisation are heard in a safe and open environment, which is essential to ensuring your EDI policy is followed through. This blog is about doing just that.

5. Does your organisation provide unconscious bias training?

Well done. Ideally, all staff should do this type of training, but at the very least it should be compulsory for anyone involved in recruitment, appraisal, training or management or who is part of your induction process for new starters.

We all have deep biases, some of which would surprise us if we knew we held them. It’s just part of being human. Sometimes those biases create inequality unless you are trained to be wary of them. This training is useful for all staff, but absolutely essential for anyone involved in recruitment, appraisal, training or management or who’s part of your induction process for new recruits. This is a good place to get started.

Ideally, all staff should do training, but at the very least it should be compulsory for anyone involved in recruitment, appraisal, training or management or who is part of your induction process for new recruits. This is a good place to get started.

6. Does your organisation have its own support groups or mentoring schemes for particular groups who might be disadvantaged in the workplace?

Good stuff. It’s worth considering whether you’re providing for everyone who may need support. Women? Ethnic minorities? LGBT+? Colleagues with disabilities? Colleagues from less privileged socio-economic backgrounds? Who else could you support and how? And are you connecting with individuals in other organisations through our IP Inclusive communities?

Even the smallest organisations should consider how best to create a supportive working environment for everyone, especially those who may find it hardest to do what may be seen by others as straightforward. Take a look at these tips on building inclusive workplaces. Also, why not connect with like-minded individuals in other organisations through our IP Inclusive communities?

Even the smallest organisations should consider how best to create a supportive working environment for everyone, especially those who may find it hardest to do what may be seen by others as straightforward. Take a look at these tips on building inclusive workplaces. Also, why not connect with like-minded individuals in other organisations through our IP Inclusive communities?

7. Does your organisation take active steps to remove bias from its processes and systems?

That’s great, but remember, bias runs deep and it requires constant vigilance to keep it from creeping into the ways your organisation works. Building in “nudges” to balance biases can help. This toolkit and this webinar may help keep you heading in the right direction. 

Unconcious bias training is important, but often biases creep into the very systems you operate under – through language, corporate culture, assumptions or even just ways of working that exclude people or groups of people. Rethink your systems and practices to rid them of bias and build in “nudges” to steer behaviour to keep bias at bay. This toolkit and this webinar may help you head in the right direction. 

If you haven’t noticed changes to address bias, then probably the answer is NO, because, in order to tackle unconscious biases that have crept into your internal systems, you need to take steps to consciously unbias behaviours and assumptions. Try changing your answer to this question to NO instead. 

8. Do you get involved in diversity and inclusion events and campaigns?

There are always more events and campaigning is a never-ending commitment. Perhaps your organisation could host or sponsor an event? Perhaps you could do more to support IP Inclusive Week? Find out some of the other ways you can help.

IP Inclusive’s calendar is packed with useful training and awareness-raising events, but there are also great opportunities for support and socialising. Get involved in our communities, support IP Inclusive Week and find out about the myriad other ways you can help.

IP Inclusive’s calendar of events is packed with useful training, but there are also great opportunities for support and socialising. Get involved in our communities, support IP Inclusive Week and find out about the myriad other ways you can help.

9. Does your organisation collect diversity and inclusion data?

Good data is the first step, but it also matters what you do with it. Do you have targets for improvements? Are you analysing the numbers to see where you’re falling short and are you using the data to make evidence-led changes? 

How can you know whether you’re falling short unless you collect the evidence? How can you know in what ways you could do better or what would make a difference? It’s essential to collect data about diversity, particularly during recruitment, but also to monitor who leaves the organisation, who does well and whether people’s salaries show patterns of unfairness. 

How can you know whether you’re falling short unless you collect the evidence? How can you know in what ways you could do better or what would make a difference? It’s essential to collect data about diversity, particularly during recruitment, but also to monitor who leaves the organisation, who does well and whether people’s salaries show patterns of unfairness. 

10. Does your organisation have a mental health at work policy?

Well done. Although on its own, a policy is only as good as the way it’s put into practice. There needs to be the right training and support too. For more information, take a look at our toolkit, download our sample mental health at work policy or visit our dedicated page on mental health and wellbeing, created in collaboration with the charity Jonathan’s Voice.

Quite apart from the personal anguish for individuals, mental ill-health can be every bit as damaging to an organisation’s productivity as any other illness, yet outdated attitudes make it harder to tackle. Having the right policies, support and staff training in place is critical. For more information, take a look at our toolkit, download our sample mental health at work policy or visit our dedicated page on mental health and wellbeing, created in collaboration with the charity Jonathan’s Voice.

Quite apart from the personal anguish for individuals, mental ill-health can be every bit as damaging to an organisation’s productivity as any other illness, yet outdated attitudes make it harder to tackle. Having the right policies, support and staff training in place is critical. For more information, take a look at our toolkit, download our sample mental health at work policy or visit our dedicated page on mental health and wellbeing, created in collaboration with the charity Jonathan’s Voice.

How did you do?

Mostly YES:

Well done. You clearly care deeply about inclusion and you’re putting your beliefs into practice. But don’t rest on your laurels. There’s always more to be done, not least sharing your commitment and everything you’ve learnt with the rest of the IP community. Time to lead the way.

Mostly NO:

There’s room for improvement, isn’t there? Hopefully, though, the fact that you’re reading this and have answered these questions shows that you want to do better. And we also hope that the tips we’ve given provide you with the road map needed to make that change. Tomorrow starts today.

Mostly DON’T KNOW:

Maybe responsibility for inclusion doesn’t fall into your job description so you just don’t know how much your organisation is doing?  The thing is, when it comes to equality, diversity and inclusion, it’s not an issue that can be parked in one person’s in-tray. It’s everybody’s duty – not only for ourselves and our colleagues as individuals, but also for the organisations we work for, our clients and our wider society.

If you don’t know the answers to these questions, it suggests that diversity and inclusion aren’t taken seriously enough in your organisation: an inclusive approach isn’t yet seeping through the corporate culture. Well, not to worry: that can change now. Our Steps to Inclusion review could be just the thing you need to get you started on the road to a more diverse and inclusive future.