The term “equity” refers to fairness and justice and is distinguished from equality: Whereas equality means providing the same to all, equity means recognizing that we do not all start from the same place and must acknowledge and make adjustments to imbalances. The process is ongoing, requiring us to identify and overcome intentional and unintentional barriers arising from bias or systemic structures
Equity in the workplace is about “leveling the playing field,” and giving every employee the unique resources they need to have access to opportunities at a given organization. Here are a few ways you can implement a practice of equity within your company.
Prioritize wage equity
Discussion of wages has been made taboo in the past, however, this allows bias in the form of wage disparities to slip through the cracks. Having transparency around wages and openly discussing correlations between employee performance, position and rate of pay are essential to ensuring fair compensation.
Ensure diverse cross-level representation
Many organizations hire for diversity but fail to provide equitable opportunities for advancement to their diverse hires. When this happens, what we see is high diversity in low-paying and low-authority jobs, and over (or exclusive) representation of one demographic in leadership and management. Your company should empower diverse employees by giving equitable promotions and upholding diverse representation in executive positions.
Implement a workforce education program
Systemic barriers prevent especially Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC), as well as disabled individuals from accessing education. This lack of access creates an enormous diversity deficit in many workplaces. By investing in a workforce education program, you’re providing your marginalized employees with a potentially life-changing resource that enables them to advance their careers and grow with your company. Fair education is the key to an equitable future in the workplace