You might have read about our D&I learning journey, the start of our journey to create a better Tessian and a better world. After such an illuminating learning series, it was tempting to dive straight into initiatives and solutions. But if we want to tackle such significant and impactful challenges, we can’t work on everything all at once. We need focus.
So we made an active decision to approach D&I with the rigor we bring to all aspects of work at Tessian…and that means data. We gathered data we knew could inform our broader D&I strategy and help us to narrow down focus areas where we could have sustainable impact.
Gathering the data
The aim of our internal research was to understand:
- What our representation at Tessian looks like; and
- Whether the experience of Tessians varies according to personal attributes and protected characteristics
On a voluntary basis, we asked all our Tessians to submit information about themselves using our engagement platform Peakon. We had great uptake, with 80-90% of Tessians providing information about their personal attributes. This allowed us to understand representation at Tessian, across different aspects of diversity, including gender, sexual orientation, religion, ethnicity, and age.
From this we were able to:
- Segment anonymous employee experience feedback scores to identify groups (based on personal characteristics) who are having a different experience and;
- Conduct a pay gap and employee retention analysis
Determining focus areas
You might be thinking…how statistically significant is data when you’re a small company (for reference, we’re currently about 150 people)? We asked ourselves this question A LOT. With so few data points, we were reluctant to draw certain conclusions from our findings. Instead, we have treated our findings as indicators of places we need to go and do further research. The data isn’t the be all and end all of our understanding, but it does provide the signposts.
We paired these data insights with what we hear from the company anecdotally, and what we know to be the case in the tech industry. This gave us a good picture of where Tessian is with D&I today. But we still needed focus.
So, we asked ourselves:
- Where are our biggest concerns?
- Where can we make a significant impact?
These two simple questions helped us to identify the key focus areas of our D&I efforts this year. So…where did we land?
- Ensure every Tessian continues to feel like they’re supported, valued and belong at Tessian
- Improve ethnicity and gender representation across all levels of seniority at Tessian
We believe by focusing in these areas we can create a long-lasting positive impact on diversity and inclusion, in Tessian and in our industry.
Building our strategy
Once we had our focus areas, we worked closely with our exec team to build the strategy and tactics we would commit to this year. These discussions with our exec team centred not only on how to make change for a better Tessian, but also initiatives that would help create a more diverse industry.
As the exec team were bouncing ideas on tactics, we were careful to keep in mind every point of the employee life cycle. When thinking about D&I, it’s easy to focus on top of funnel diversity in hiring. Improving representation through hiring is important, but on its own it’s not enough. It matters what Tessians experience once they’re through the door too.