Mike Blackburn, managing director at I-COM, said: “In any working environment, there needs to be a strategy and systems in place that encourage inclusion, but strategy on its own won’t ensure that inclusion is achieved.

“Businesses must engage with their staff to understand the needs and expectations of individuals and they must be flexible when implementing initiatives in order to meet those expectations.

“It sounds simple, but so many companies fail at this crucial hurdle.”

Consult staff and stakeholders

Rosie Clarke, senior inclusion and diversity consultant at Inclusive Employers says that you need to consult your workforce, different stakeholders and your diversity data before putting a strategy together.

It is vital that the strategy will change things that your current and future employees find valuable, so speak to them first.

She also advises business owners to be focused on their approach.

She said: “You can’t solve all the problems overnight so decide what to focus on in the short, medium and long term.

“Once you have built your strategy it is also important to decide what your measures of success are and how you will collect information.”

Source – Manchester Evening News