We know how high diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) practices are on your priority list if you lead a modern organization. But, before you start doing anything, you must know where your company currently stands in terms of DE&I. This is where you'll need to be ready with some effective diversity and inclusion questions, which we'll go over in this article.
Typically, companies believe that diversity begins with hiring, and they couldn't be more mistaken. While hiring diverse employees is certainly a step in the right direction, you must take a few prerequisite steps before moving forward with any DE&I plan.
Top diversity representation includes workers from various cultures, backgrounds, ages, castes, races, sexuality, etc. And diverse, equitable, and inclusive refers to giving equal employment opportunities and recognition to every worker irrespective of where they come from and who they identify as.
So, now it is upto your HR team and hiring managers to choose the type of diversity and inclusion questions you wish to include in your surveys.
Thus, this article discusses some of the best questions you must include in your employee pulse surveys. We emphasize these questions because they add inclusivity and enhance employee engagement at work. So, let’s begin with the basics.
What are Diversity and Inclusion Questions, and Why is it Necessary?
Diversity and inclusion questions are a set of survey questions that you must include in your feedback forms to understand and recognize workers from every background. It is a sign of creating an inclusive working environment.
Companies often carry out employee surveys annually, and after analyzing the response, they try to figure out how to improve the overall employee experience. However, many companies fail to include a D&I component in these surveys or make the questions generic, omitting minorities.
After analyzing the responses, companies often carry out employee surveys or feedback to understand their needs and improve workers’ employee experience. But, many companies fail to incorporate the D&I aspect or exclude minorities from their surveys.
According to Glassdoor research, more than half the employees think their companies must work more towards increasing diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
This statistic depicts the bottom-line importance of including diversity and inclusion survey questions in employee feedback. By doing so, companies and leadership teams will understand if they are truly diverse and inclusive. Based on the responses, leaders can make necessary changes to improve their company culture.
Recommended Resource: 15 Diversity And Inclusion Statistics You Must Know
26 Best Diversity and Inclusion Questions You Must Include in Employee Surveys
When we think about D&I improvement, we see improvements in engagement, employee retention, and job satisfaction levels. Thus, keeping everything in mind, we have come up with these 26 survey questions to help measure diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
Important Questions on Diversity
1. How diverse is your executive team?
Without a doubt, one of the first diversity and inclusion questions you should ask your employees is this one.
Only when your executive team values and treats every employee equally can they bring the desired change to the workplace. Such unbiased and impartial support from managers will motivate team members to support equality and treat people with respect and dignity.
2. Do you think our promotion and evaluation process is diverse?
If your company's diversity is a core mission, it will be reflected in the performance evaluation and promotion process.
This question is important because it will clarify if your promotions and evaluations are free of biases, prejudices, privileges, favoritism, or discrimination that your employees might face.
3. Do you think our company celebrates diverse ideas and people?
This basic yet significant question reflects if your company culture is fair, equal, and supportive of diverse individuals.
You can make this question either open-ended or scale-based, or both. If you’re trying to make a significant change, then the scale value will let you know about the severity of the issue, and the open-ended one will give you a detailed response on the areas to improve. It depends on the data you’re trying to collect and what kind of changes you are willing to make in this area.
4. How well does HR work towards hiring candidates from underrepresented groups?
Diversity and inclusion are never-ending efforts, and it starts right from the interview process until the end of an employee’s life cycle in your company. To put it another way, this question reflects your company's commitment to diversity in the workplace.
Wondering how? Well, diverse companies constantly look to hire people from various backgrounds with new and innovative perspectives. However, companies that simply say they are diverse but do nothing to prove it continue to look for the "right fit" in their company culture.
5. On a scale of 1 to 5, how well can you talk about your background without being judged?
This is a must-add diversity and inclusion survey question if you want to make your workplace diverse. Ensure these surveys are completely anonymous. Many new candidates face this issue, and they sometimes get rejected because of their identity or background. Hence, this question will help you understand if your company follows a discrimination-free hiring process.
Once you’ve gathered the responses, it is time to analyze. When you check for results, you closely understand employees’ sentiments and if they are comfortable talking about their culture and being themselves at work.
6. On a scale of 1 to 5, how likely does the top management cater and support the needs of colleagues with disabilities?
Now, this is a great question to analyze the competence and empathy of your top management officials and how they treat their subordinates with disabilities.
Also, you must keep this question scale based, as it will give you a clear picture of how much you need to improve in making your workplace accessible for all employees.
7. How do you think the company must improve its diversity efforts in the future?
Let’s make this question simple for you. If responses to the previous question indicate that you must improve on diversity in the workplace, this question will tell you how you can improve on those issues.
Ensure you make this an open-ended question. By doing so, your employees will have a chance to express their views and opinions uninhibited. Take serious note of the suggestions and work on improving diversity in your workplace.
Important Questions to Measure Inclusion at Work
Now let’s look at the seven important questions that will help you analyze the level of inclusivity in your team.
8. Do you feel the training and induction you receive promote inclusivity?
This is an important diversity and inclusion question to ask to measure the diversity training programs and other training sessions at work. With the responses given, you will have a fair idea about the competency and inclusivity of training at work.
Make sure you ask about every training and induction and how well these sessions promote inclusivity. Make it open-ended so that you can receive detailed feedback.
Recommended Resource: 7 Steps To Create A Diversity Training Program
9. On a scale of 1 to 5, how safe do you feel communicating your concerns at work?
A safe working environment allows employees to express their concerns without inhibitions and hesitance. When managers and peers make them feel safe, they are more inclined to speak about their discomforts and report workplace harassment.
Try to make this a scale-based question because it helps understand on what level do your employees feel safe at work.
10. Do you think we give priority to inclusion at work?
This is not a yearly survey question or a review question only; this is something that you must ask your workers regularly. Asking this question will help you realize if your company has any barriers to fostering an inclusive workplace culture.
If you receive answers that are majorly supporting inclusivity, you are on the right path. If not, you must work on it immediately. Here, your leadership style and skills will play a major role in how you bring the desired changes to the workplace.
11. What do you like the most about our company regarding inclusivity?
You have nothing to worry about if you follow a reward and recognition program completely based on skills and performance. Asking this diversity and inclusion question will help you understand what initiatives you must work on to make your workplace more inclusive.
This is an important question because the responses will help you move a step forward towards inclusivity and provide a great employee experience for everyone. It will let you be more sensible in addressing employee issues, and you will be more woke in analyzing potential isolation or discrimination at work.
12. Do you feel confident enough to raise your opinions at work?
Many employees who belong to minority groups are afraid of being isolated or discriminated against if they express their opposing viewpoints. This question is ideal for including in surveys to help you determine if your employees are experiencing the same thing.
If the responses are major “yes,” you have nothing to worry about. But, if you receive mixed responses, it is a sign of toxicity, and you must work on improving the same.
13. Do you see career growth in this company?
If you give utmost importance to diversity and inclusion in your workplace, you will mostly receive positive responses to this question. Also, this is a sign of employee job satisfaction and increased employee retention, which is a benefit of implementing DEI at work.
14. Do you think we need to improve on your D&i initiatives? If yes, how and where?
This survey question is critical in determining what your employees actually want when it comes to improving the company's DE&I strategy.
You can make this question multiple-choice and include a comment box for employees to provide additional feedback. That way, you will know the specific areas of improvement, and you can start improving them gradually.
Panel Questions about Diversity and Inclusion
- What is your definition and meaning of diversity?
- How do you define inclusion? What does it mean to you in a workplace scenario?
- Why is D&I an important topic of discussion?
- Do you think our D&I initiatives have influenced you and work on bringing a change?
- Do you think our company has a diverse team? What new challenges do they bring?
- How far along the D&I journey do you feel the organization is at?
- What barriers to diversity and inclusion have you noticed in the company?
Diversity and Inclusion Questions about Benefits (For Leaders and Executive Team)
- Do you think your organization successfully implemented diversity initiatives or best practices?
- Did D&I have a positive impact on your company culture?
- How does D&I impact you on a personal level?
- How did implementing D&I initiatives benefit you and the company as a whole?
- What are the long-term consequences if you ignore or fail to recognize D&I at work?
You just took a look at the 26 best diversity and inclusion questions that you must add to your employee surveys or feedback forms. You need to add the right questions, as it will help you successfully analyze your workplace conditions.
DEI is a constant effort and not something that happens automatically. If you wish to make your company culture the best, you must constantly work on your D&I initiatives.