Every year on International Women’s Day, in our efforts towards greater transparency about our workforce, Rewind releases our progress towards our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) goals. As an employer in tech, we recognize that we have a responsibility to uplift diverse voices in technology. In line with our values of “accountability” and “open, honest, and respectful,” here is our 2022 update on our DEI goals and progress.
Last year, we published our overall corporate DEI initiatives. As a recap, here are the overarching goals we’ve been working toward:
- To have 50% female or non-male representation within Rewind by 2024.
- To have 20% female or non-male representation within the Research & Development (R&D) team by the end of 2021.
- To have 25% female or non-male representation within the R&D team by 2024.
We also identified a new goal of increasing the overall diversity in our leadership team.
- To increase the overall diversity (including gender diversity at the manager and executive level.) Our goal is to end 2022 with 20% of our leadership team self-identifying as female, non-male, or another member of an Equity Seeking Group.
You can view our full article about our diversity statistics in 2020 here. Please note that all of our data is optionally self-reported in an anonymous fashion.
Let’s dive into our progress in 2021!
Goal #1: Achieve 50% female or non-male representation within Rewind by 2024.
This goal is in progress. After reviewing, our People team decided to break this goal down into specific annual targets to continue to hold ourselves accountable.
For 2021, our revised goal was 30% female or non-male representation in the organization. At the end of 2021, 32.8% of Rewinders self-identified as female or non-male.
For 2022, our revised goal is to achieve 40% female or non-male representation in the organization. As of February 1st, 2022, 32.6% of Rewinders self-identified as female or non-male. We will update our progress towards this goal next year.
Goal #2: Achieve 20% female or non-male representation within the R&D team by the end of 2021, and 25% female or non-male representation by 2024.
Unfortunately, we did not meet this goal. At the end of 2021, the Rewind R&D team self-identified as 13% female or non-male. As of February 2022, 14.8% of the Rewind R&D team self-identified as female or non-male. We will update our progress towards this goal next year.
Goal #3: Increase the overall diversity of the Rewind leadership team.
Cultural changes and shifts must be supported from the top down: therefore, Rewind is introducing a new DEI goal of 20% diverse leadership by the end of 2022. At the end of 2021, 17% of individuals in management and executive positions self-identified as female or non-male. We will update our progress towards this goal next year.
A Diversified Rewind
While International Women’s Day is specifically about celebrating and uplifting women, there are many equity-seeking groups at Rewind whose diversity of thought and experience are invaluable. Here is a full breakdown of our Equity Seeking Groups by level, as of February 1st, 2022.
Rewind is also lucky to benefit from employees with a range of experience, both in terms of years in the industry and years on this earth. Our current age demographics as of February 1st, 2022, are:
How will Rewind achieve our DEI goals?
In 2021, Rewind experienced a period of explosive growth, including in our headcount. 2021 began with 65 Rewinders: by the end of the year, Team Rewind was up to 133 members!
While enabling our growth with the best people remains a priority, Rewind is also committed to growing our team in a way that encourages diversity amongst our team members. Following this, a number of new policies were introduced to both retain, attract, and grow diverse talents at Rewind:
Extended Parental Leave
Our paid pregnancy and parental leave benefit now provides up to one year of paid leave. This benefit extends beyond traditional maternity leave and is meant to inclusively support mothers, fathers, partners, those who do not identify as female, and families that grow through adoption. Amanda Gordon, VP of People, elaborates: “We ask women at Rewind what matters to them and then move our programming to match. As an example, we increased our parental leave to 1 year based on their feedback.”
To help ease the transition in and out of work, we’ve developed a new “re-onboarding” program. This new program is specifically designed to ease the anxieties associated with returning from a leave of absence. This helps to ensure that all Rewinders, parents or not, can achieve their full potential at work. While on leave, Rewinders continue to benefit from our Professional Development allowance of $5000 CAD/year and two paid days to “Level Up” and complete training, attend courses, or any other activity that benefits their career and skills development.
Continuous Evaluation of our Recruitment and Interview Process
Continually examining our recruitment and interviewing process ensures inclusivity from the very first touchpoint and removes barriers that may exist in our process.
Specifically, we have:
- Reviewed the language we use in our job descriptions and postings using tools that automatically detect and flag gendered language, and suggest neutral alternatives. Other evidence-based actions we’ve taken to improve gender equality include: offering flexible working by default, structuring interviews for recruitment and promotion, utilizing skill-based assessments during recruitments, and making expectations around salaries clear. Mara Ribeiro, Talent Acquisition Specialist at Rewind, explains: “We are actively removing unconscious bias from our hiring process and integrating behavioral science in our work. As an example, we know that job advertisements can contain up to 8% gendered language (Gaucher, Friesen & Kay, 2011). To foster gender-inclusive job postings, we are currently conducting an experiment to test conditions of gendered wording effects, particularly, in male-dominated areas, such as R&D.”
- Researched new ways to share job opportunities to ensure we are reaching diverse talent. For example, Rewind was proud to present at the recent University of Ottawa Engineering Faculty’s panel discussion targeting internationally trained women in STEM looking for jobs in Canada.
- Re-evaluated the take-home assignment step in our interview process. Parents and those with caregiving responsibilities often cannot commit time to these assignments, causing us to lose these candidates at this step in our progress. However, research has shown that skill-based tasks that assess a variety of skills and abilities may help to reduce differences in how men and woman are rated. We’re now developing ways to measure an applicant’s work skills without requiring them to complete an additional task outside of the interviewing/recruitment process.
These revisions to our interview and recruitment process have helped us attract a diverse range of talent to Rewind.
Audit Pay Equity
Pay equity, or equal pay for individuals in similar roles regardless of gender, is an essential component of our DEI program. An organization-wide pay equity audit helped us reveal, confront, and remediate gender disparities in pay. This initiative will be repeated as necessary.
We have also incorporated tools to support equitable career development at Rewind. Pando, an open leveling framework and performance management tool, is competency-based and allows a very clear and systematic path to help employees improve and thrive. It also increases visibility for career progression while removing bias.
Continue Support of Hybrid and Flexible Work
Rewind continues to embrace a remote and flexible work environment. While some companies have opted for mandatory hybrid styles with the reopening of offices, Rewind has no such requirement. Rewinders can come into an office daily, every other day, once a week, once a month, or never: we believe in enabling our people to work the way they work best.
This hybrid and flexible model helps support Rewinders with children at home, family responsibilities, other caregiving responsibilities, chronic health issues, and those who need additional flexibility in their workday.
In order to best support hybrid employees, Rewind’s Hybrid Work Committee provides insights into how Rewind can improve our ability to work asynchronously and be more inclusive of people who take advantage of our flexible hours. This committee, made up of both “in-office” and “work-from-home” employees, is an essential component of understanding what Rewinders need to do their best work.
Hybrid and flexible work arrangements also allow us to utilize diverse talent from across the world. Rewind is lucky to benefit from a range of geographic diversity. As of February 7th, 2022, #TeamRewind spanned 2 continents, 4 countries, 1 US state, and 7 Canadian provinces.
Continue Support of Flexible Health Benefits
“What’s fair is not always equal, and what’s equal is not always fair.” We know this, and therefore Rewind has implemented a flexible health care spending account. This allows Rewinders to choose for themselves what they need to support their health and well-being. Additionally, Rewinders are eligible for a $300 CAD/year stipend for health, fitness, or wellness. This benefit is extremely flexible and allows Rewinders to seek out whatever they need to support their physical or mental well-being: from meditation classes to aromatherapy to new skates, it’s all covered.
Launch internal Diversity, Equity, and Inclusivity Taskforce
Rewind is launching a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusivity task force, made up of Rewinders themselves. They will focus on holding Rewind accountable for our goals as well as identifying new opportunities and initiatives to support and uplift diverse voices. The overall goal of the task force is to focus on belongingness, rather than simply counting individuals. They will aim to make DEI a focus year-round, not only during certain months.
What’s Next for DEI at Rewind?
Of course, DEI matters all year round, not just on March 8th. So how will Rewind maintain its momentum towards our goals?
“2022 will see us introduce programming to grow stronger managers and leaders at Rewind. Our cohorts will target future female leaders for Rewind, a critical element to our future success. When we gave ourselves a target of 50% by 2024, it was time to shift gears in all corners of our business and in decision-making at all levels. It goes beyond hiring. This goal reflects our focus on stronger talent attraction capabilities and it puts the spotlight on retention and leadership development programming for women at Rewind,” states VP of People, Amanda Gordon.
It’s important to remember that “ally” is a verb as well as a noun. That means we must continually do the work of developing and supporting DEI initiatives, not just on International Women’s Day but every day throughout the year.
Or, as Ricardo McCrae, founder of BlackinCanada.com and Marketing Director at Aegon, recently told Rewinders during his “Black History Month: How to Be a Better Ally” presentation, “being an ally doesn’t mean accolades. Allies help people achieve and get things done in life.”
McCrae has another metaphor that really spoke to us. He reminded us of the “spiderman” factor: anyone can get bitten by a radioactive spider, but not everyone chooses to use their powers for good. “Be like spiderman,” says McCrae, “and use your power for good.”
Interested in building your career alongside our culture? We’d love to hear from you: check out our available positions here, or join our talent network for future consideration.