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At Braze, we make diversity and inclusion a top priority, not just for our company’s success, but because we believe it’s the right thing to do. We strive for equal representation and parity of roles, and ensure that everything we do is inclusive for everyone.

Diversity and inclusion. You hear these two words a lot these days, especially in the context of business and the technology industry. They’re also concepts that have been a big focus for us here at Braze over the last several months. But what does diversity and inclusion actually mean—and why is everyone talking about it?

Diversity, as it relates to the workplace, is all about variety in employee representation. When we think about diversity, we tend to look at basic demographics: gender identity, race and ethnicity, age, sexual orientation, and veteran and disability status. But diversity of education, experience, and thought are also key characteristics to consider. Inclusion is concerned with embracing that variety. It’s the extent to which each employee feels that they can be their authentic self at work and experiences a sense of belonging when it comes to the company culture. Ultimately, diversity is the who and inclusion is the how.

In recent years, diversity and inclusion (D&I) has become an increasingly popular topic of conversation, and for good reason. There have been copious headlines and firsthand accounts of corporate issues ranging from higher education discrimination to the gender pay gap to outright racism. Because of this, more and more companies have been making efforts to amplify diversity and inclusion at their organizations to combat or simply prevent these problems altogether. But companies are also allocating time and resources to D&I because, frankly, it’s good for business. Studies tell us that diverse and inclusive teams drive creativity and innovation, and ultimately better performance, which directly impacts the bottom line.

At Braze, we make diversity and inclusion a top priority, not just for our company’s success, but because we believe it’s the right thing to do. We strive for equal representation and parity of roles, and ensure that everything we do is inclusive for everyone.

How do we do that? By attracting, hiring, developing, and retaining a best-in-class and diverse workforce to broaden and deepen representation across all demographics. We have been establishing partnerships with colleges, universities, and non-profit organizations that support underrepresented populations from which we can source talent. With the help of innovative software, we’re making the language in our job descriptions more neutral and inclusive. Additionally, we’re focusing on our employer branding with employee profiles (take a look at our Brazeball Cards!) and “day in the life” content on our social media channels. (If you’re interested in joining our team, check out our current openings!)

Fostering an inclusive workplace in which all employees feel respected, treated fairly, empowered, recognized, safe and heard, where they have an opportunity to excel, and can achieve work-life harmony is a foundational value of Braze. We’re training our employees on workplace equality, managing diverse teams, and inclusive leadership. We have started assembling employee resource groups to offer team members with different backgrounds, lifestyles, and abilities the opportunity to network, address common issues and concerns, and receive support from their peers. We have also begun commemorating various history, cultural, and regional holidays like Women’s Equality Day and World Mental Health Day for awareness and education.

Outside of Braze, we’re working to develop more pathways to the tech space and bridge the opportunity gap by working with several organizations to empower those who have been historically underserved in the industry with the skills needed for achievement. Further, we’re hosting activities and events with students to get them interested and excited about careers in technology. We’re championing equal rights through community advocacy to enact change as well—in fact, we recently signed the Business Statement for Transgender Equality along with 180 other companies to voice our support for transgender, gender non-conforming, and intersex legal protections.

We’re proud of the initial results from our efforts, but we know that there is much more to do. By recruiting varied talent, cultivating an open and welcoming environment, and supporting the community, we will truly be able to make Braze for ALL.

Andrew Tuchfeld

Andrew is a People Business Partner based in New York City. At Braze (formerly Appboy), you can find him advising and coaching Braze team members, and managing strategic HR projects.