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Friendly Employer?

This month’s Pride celebration represents just how far we’ve come as a nation in accepting diversity and promoting inclusion.

But what does it really mean to be a LGBTQ friendly employer

An employer’s guide to LGBTQ+ inclusion in the workplace.

What does LGBTQ mean?

LGBTQ+ includes lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people. Note that more sexualities can feature under the LGBTQ+ umbrella, hence the use of the plus symbol (for example: intersex people, pansexualityasexuality, and people who are questioning their sexuality/gender identity).

For a business, it’s about ensuring you have people of different backgrounds and experiences represented in the workplace. To be ‘inclusive’ is creating a work environment where people’s differences in thought and experience are not only appreciated but viewed as a business advantage.

Am i doing enough?

Here at MARS Recruitment, it’s our strong belief that when people feel their true authentic self and connected to their organisation, they can achieve their full potential at work and LGBTQ employees are no exception.

To ensure that your company is promoting inclusion and diversity in the workplace, here are some ways you can be a better LGBTQ employer:

  1. Review your hiring strategies

Hopefully, you’ll already have enforced LGBTQ friendly policies in place, with a set baseline for welcoming LGBTQ employees. But what if your hiring practices are preventing people from joining in the first place? In a candidate-driven market, it’s simply not enough to just commit to LGBTQ inclusiveness in your workplace – you need to shout about it and raise awareness among both prospective and existing employees alike. Promote an open and inclusive culture, talk about it in your company values, fundraise for local LGBTQ organisations, invite your team to share their positive experiences and viewpoints, get creative!

  1. Promote diversity, empower and educate

A positive, inclusive company culture begins right at the top. Ensure your leadership team is visible and confident in its support for all employees. As an employer, you should implement team staff diversity and cultural sensitivity training which explains what anti-LGBTQ discrimination or abuse might look like, why it’s bad for business and how to challenge anti-LGBT attitudes among colleagues.

  1. Show you care

There are subtle but highly appreciative things you can do to show your LGBTQ employees that not only are they valued but that they can be themselves around you. Part of educating yourself is also relearning how you view the world around you, which might mean unlearning certain expectations or assumptions. Don’t hide away from things you don’t understand, if you’re unsure what ‘nonbinary’ means, spend some time finding out. Be inclusive, speak up and try to listen.

  1. Collaborate with allies of LGBTQ people

Allies are important and welcome supporters of the LGBTQ community; they can be effective and powerful voices for LGBTQ equality and can help LGBTQ people feel comfortable coming out whilst helping others understand the importance of equality and fairness for all people. Many forward-thinking companies have internal committees that are dedicated to promoting LGBTQ inclusion practices within their organisation and teaching others how to be an LGBTQ ally.

  1. Adopt a Gender-Neutral Work Environment

Bathroom access – have you considered introducing gender-neutral bathrooms or encouraged trans employees to use bathrooms that align with their gender identity? “Misgendering” of trans employees, whether intentional or unintentional can be relatively common at work, so pay attention to your use of correct names and pronouns. If a colleague is using neutral language to describe their partner, mirror that. Scared of making a mistake? Just ask! But make sure you get it right the next time.

Hiring now? We can help.

We are a leading Recruitment Agency in Oxfordshire who’s aim is to really understand the career aspirations and motivations behind a candidate’s job search. This enables our team to match not only technical skills, but align someone’s career goals and personality to the right job role and hiring business.

If you would like to engage a Recruitment Consultancy which really goes the extra mile to understand and ensure that we’re placing the right individuals into your business, please do not hesitate to contact our team for an informative discussion around your recruitment challenges.