Gender inequality, harassment, and sexism in the workplace are all too common and rarely out of the headlines. In his new book on innovations, James Bidwell covers a ‘TripAdvisor’ for the workplace lets employees anonymously review any companies’ treatment of women at work.
Research reveals just how pervasive sexism is in the corporate world, but it has been difficult to gauge workplace culture from the outside. How can potential employees have a sense of company culture before they start working?
In six major cities, jobseekers can now review the treatment of women in their potential workplace via an online platform called InHerSight. The website collates anonymous reviews from former and current employees – both male and female – so that women can find out more about the company’s policies, office culture, and other potential issues before applying for or accepting a job there.
Their mission is to improve the workplace for women by measuring it.
“We bring women’s insights together into a common framework to show what’s working and what’s not at companies, and to help more women find their ideal workplace.”
With so many women sexually harassed at work, InHerSight gives those women a voice, so they can communicate misconduct or other problematic corporate policies without fear of recrimination since the scorecards are entirely anonymous.
Workplaces are scored on 14 categories including their stance on maternity leave, flexible working hours and female representation in senior positions. By bringing individual insights together into a common framework, InHerSight provides a well-informed and representative picture of what it’s really like for women in the workplace, says Bidwell.
The website currently covers the media, healthcare, finance, education, consumer goods and technology industries and though focused upon key US city locations (New York, Boston, San Francisco, Chicago, Washington and Los Angeles). According to Bidwell, it’s a template that would be easy to adapt to the UK.
Bidwell is an entrepreneur and business leader who has helped turnaround a number of prominent UK businesses, including Selfridges, where he was marketing director. He led the renaissance of London tourism as CEO of Visit London, launched Anthropologie Europe as CEO, as well as turning around Cass Art as NED and CEO. For Bidwell, tackling corporate gender gaps is a matter of national urgency.
User feedback reveals that InHerSight’s ratings help women make better-informed decisions about what companies they want to work for based on issues that are relevant to their lives, including career growth, family-friendly policies, and office culture.
Thousands of past and present employees have already been rated government agencies as well as household names like Amazon, Google, Coca-Cola, Walmart, and Microsoft.
“Founder Ursula Mead envisions the site as a TripAdvisor for women in the workplace and hopes that by holding companies accountable for their support for women, it will encourage them to review and improve their treatment,” says Bidwell.
“Using crowdsourced data to seek to eliminate sexism in the workplace (and also to improve working practices generally) has never more urgently needed to be an integral part of the UK work culture.”