A workplace encouraging equality, diversity and inclusion can help:
- make it more successful
- keep employees happy and motivated
- prevent serious or legal issues arising, such as bullying, harassment and discrimination
- to better serve a diverse range of customers
- improve ideas and problem-solving
- attract and keep good staff
Equality in the workplace means equal job opportunities and fairness for employees and job applicants.
You must not treat people unfairly because of reasons protected by discrimination law (‘protected characteristics’). For example, because of a person’s sex, age or race.
Diversity is the range of people in your workforce. For example, this might mean people with different ages, religions, ethnicities, people with disabilities, and both men and women. It also means valuing those differences.
To avoid bullying, harassment or discrimination, you should make sure:
- your workforce and managers understand what is protected by discrimination law
- what’s expected under discrimination law is actually happening in your workplace
- you make changes if what’s expected is not happening, for example stepping up staff training
- your workforce and managers understand what the benefits can be of having a range of people with different backgrounds
An inclusive workplace means everyone feels valued at work. It lets all employees feel safe to:
- come up with different ideas
- raise issues and suggestions to managers, knowing this is encouraged
- try doing things differently to how they’ve been done before, with management approval
An inclusive workplace can help lower the risk of bullying, harassment and discrimination.