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How can an inclusive workplace culture benefit businesses?

Businesswoman in wheelchair having business meeting with team at office

An inclusive workplace is one that champions equality and hires people regardless of their social, economic or cultural background, and focuses solely on skills and creating diversity. In this blog, we will reveal how inclusive workplace culture can benefit businesses.

Ensures they are compliant

Under the 2010 Equality Act, employers are legally bound to be indiscriminate in their hiring process and business practices. This covers:

  • Race
  • Religion or belief
  • Sexual orientation
  • Sex
  • Gender reassignment
  • Age
  • Disability
  • Pregnancy and maternity
  • Marriage and civil partnership.

If an employer or employee is found to be making a decision about an applicant or other employee based on one of these protected characteristics, they could be found guilty of discrimination. This could lead to costly court cases and your reputation being ruined.

But fostering an inclusive workspace means more than ticking boxes to avoid prosecution. It means creating a genuinely equal environment and has many more benefits than just avoiding legal problems.

Hiring the right people

An inclusive workplace culture ensures that minority groups are always considered in the recruitment process due to their equal, and sometimes superior, ability to bring outstanding work to the table. For example, ignoring a job application because you perceive someone who is disabled to be less able to do the job, may mean you miss out on a brilliant candidate with all of the essential skills you need.

A disabled person may have additional skills, such as high adaptability due to the struggles they have faced in their life and unique problem-solving skills that will change the way your organisation works for the better.

Offers perspective

Marginalised people offer unique perspectives that cannot be grasped without first-hand knowledge. This means that they can give insights into how the business can be more inclusive in the way employees are treated, the facilities available, how they serve customers, and countless other ways.

An inclusive workplace culture increases sensitivity to diversity so that all stakeholders feel welcomed and positive about the environment. This leads to improved decision-making and critical thinking with diversity in mind when it could otherwise go forgotten.

Customers recognise inclusivity

Representation matters, and customers are more likely to come back if they feel like your business is fostering a positive environment, where they can see people like them working who can understand their perspective and ensure they are facilitated.

Customers may begin to feel alienated if a workplace culture appears to be non-diverse and question the inclusivity and reputability of the business as a whole.

Improves employee experience

Inclusive environments are overall more positive ones, where everyone, no matter their background, feels as if they are respected, can have their voice heard and be part of the team.

Increased morale and communication results in more effective problem solving and team working because no one feels less valued than someone else. This means that workers become more open to creative thinking and sharing innovative ideas because they know there is a team behind them that will support them. Crucially, this can help to improve productivity across the company, as well as your bottom line.

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