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Many businesses are still struggling with inclusivity

(Image credit: Image Credit: NakoPhotography / Shutterstock)

Many businesses are still failing to embrace inclusivity, with the problem particularly noticeable in the tech and IT sectors, new research has claimed.

A report from Capgemini found that although 85 percent of leadership executives believe their organizations provided equal opportunities for career development and promotions to every employee across their organizations, only 19 percent of women and ethnic minority employees agreed.

It also found that 75 percent of leaders thought women and ethnic minorities feel a sense of belonging in their organizations, despite only 24 percent of these employees in tech functions concurring.

Over half (53 percent) of women and ethnic minority employees said they would feel comfortable sharing personal experiences with other employees and peers, whereas only 9% of them feel the same comfort level with their leadership.

When it comes to internal tech teams, only 16 percent of women and ethnic-minority tech employees believed they were well represented - with the report finding that the actual figures being that only one in five employees is female, and one in six is from an ethnic-minority community. 

This is despite organizations with diverse and inclusive tech teams being around four times more likely to create inclusive products. Embracing such inclusion and diversity practices was also found to help boost businesses in a number of different ways, including being a source of innovation and differentiation (67 percent), increased revenue (56 percent), and enhanced customer satisfaction (51 percent).

Capgemini notes that as the pandemic puts greater pressure on recruiting tech talent, enterprises’ focus on diversity and inclusion is at risk.

“In a world of increasing demand for tech-fueled products and services that are free of discrimination and are inclusive by design, the importance of inclusive tech workforces, cultures and practices, is more important than ever," noted Shobha Meera, Chief Corporate Social Responsibility Officer and Group Executive Committee Member at Capgemini.

"And yet, we see a wide gap not only in the state of inclusive representation in the tech workforce of organizations, but also in the perceptions of leaders Vs women and ethnic minorities on the state of inclusion in tech. This report draws attention to the urgent need for organizations and leaders to embrace this reality and focus on improving diversity and inclusion in tech teams in a challenging talent environment.”

Mike Moore is Deputy Editor at TechRadar Pro, and has worked as a B2B and B2C tech journalist for nearly a decade, including at one of the UK's leading national newspapers and ITProPortal.