Our policy and principles
Xero actively supports diversity and inclusion in the workplace. We recognise that a diverse workforce is a strength that enables businesses, including ours, to better understand and serve customers, attract top talent and innovate successfully. Our approach to diversity and inclusion is summed up in our key principles:
We value diversity because it reflects and serves our customers and ensures our people thrive.
We’re all accountable to create an inclusive culture.
We’re committed to attracting diverse talent and hiring fairly.
We support flexible ways of working.
We’re committed to equal pay for equal work.
We have an obligation to champion diversity and inclusion in the community.
Our global diversity and inclusion program is led by our Head of Diversity and Inclusion.
We report annually on our progress against the measurable objectives for diversity approved by the Xero Board. For information about our progress against our FY21 objectives, see our most recent annual report here.
Creating an inclusive work environment
We know diversity is important but it is through inclusion that we really tap into the potential and power of our differences. Inclusion means all Xeros have a sense of belonging and fairness, feel valued and respected, and can play their part in creating business success.
Here are some examples of the ways we create an inclusive work environment:
We offer on-demand learning opportunities for all our people on topics supporting diversity and inclusion at Xero, such as unconscious bias and LGBTQI+ awareness, and we’ve created a new inclusive leadership program for our people leaders.
We’ve also conducted allyship training for all people leaders in the Americas focused on understanding the workplace experience of Black professionals, facilitated by a leader from the Black Professionals in Tech Network.
We recently launched a new program of inclusive benefits to support our people when they are starting or growing their family. Our support for parents is available to all permanent employees globally, regardless of their gender identity, how they become a parent, or how long they’ve been with Xero.
We provided a range of resources to support the mental health and wellbeing of our people in response to the COVID-19 environment. We also offered all our people an additional day of paid wellbeing leave in the lead-up to World Mental Health Day 2020 and encouraged them to share how they used that day to enhance their wellbeing.
After we rapidly transitioned to fully remote working in response to COVID-19, we delivered an updated flexible work policy that is underpinned by flexibility and choice for all employees. This also recognises the significant connections between flexibility, wellbeing and inclusion for our people.
We completed our first organisation-wide cultural diversity survey to help us understand the rich cultural diversity at Xero, and shared the global results with our people.
We celebrated cultural and religious events such as Māori, Samoan and Tongan language weeks and Matariki (Māori new year) in New Zealand; Africa Day in the UK; NAIDOC Week in Australia; and Ramadan and Lunar New Year globally. Our recently-formed Black Xero employee resource group (ERG), also curated a program of educational content and events for Black History Month in the Americas.
As well as Black Xero, we’ve launched an ERG for women in the Americas. ERGs are employee-led groups that help develop a culture of inclusion that celebrates the diversity within Xero and the communities we are a part of.
We are also proud to be a member of Diversity Council of Australia and DiversityWorks NZ.
Gender diversity at Xero
At Xero, focusing on gender diversity has always been a priority for us as we’re keen to get more women into the tech sector, ensure we have good female representation across our management levels, and remove any roadblocks to gender equality in all aspects of life at Xero. We know this drives better business outcomes not only for Xero but for our small business partners and customers.
As of 31 March 2021, 63% of our Xero leadership team (direct reports of Xero CEO) and 42% of our employees were women, and we had three female and five male directors on our Board.
As part of Xero’s continuing commitment to gender equality, we are proud to be included in the 2020 and 2021 Bloomberg Gender-Equality Indexes. This inclusion recognises our investment in fostering a more inclusive and equitable workplace.
We regularly track our diversity data for internal monitoring and accountability. As part of this work, we conduct an annual organisation-wide pay equity review at Xero and communicate results to employees. We won the ‘On the Journey’ award in the 2019 YWCA Equal Pay Awards (NZ) for our work around pay transparency and gender pay equity.
We also think it’s important to shine a spotlight on and celebrate our female Xero customers and partners who are shaping the world of small business across the globe.
How to create an inclusive workplace for parents
The disability worker breaking down bias
Xero included in Bloomberg GEI Index
International Women's Day: we all need to choose to challenge
Support for parents at Xero
Xero's commitment to diversity in the workplace globally recognised
Fostering a culture of inclusivity and equality at Xero
How our Xero Americas offices celebrated #EachforEqual this International Women’s Day
IWD: What does a gender equal workplace mean to us? Part 1 and Part 2
Encouraging women into technology
We are committed to getting more women into the tech sector through a number of initiatives including:
championing the development of STEM careers through initiatives including Xero’s graduate and intern programs.
shining a spotlight on the importance of gender equality through International Women’s Day, running events across our offices.
Despite the disruption of COVID-19, we have continued our community outreach and engagement program in New Zealand with the aim of increasing gender and ethnic diversity in the early stage pipeline of talent into tech. We shifted many activities online, including creating an online coding adventure for young people aged 9-14; co-creating the Trailblazing Women in Tech quiz for girls aged 9-13 with the She# team; and supporting our people to participate as mentors in the GirlBoss Edge engineering and technology online career accelerator for high school-aged young women. In 2021, we have resumed some in-person activities, such as hosting school student work experience days for young women and Pasifika students, and ShadowTech days for teachers.
Now is the time to change the game for women in tech
Celebrating women in STEM
Something for the kids: Xero at STEMwana 2020
Xero partners and customers nominated for top honours at the Women in Finance Awards
Students get a taste for coding at Xero’s Girlcode workshop
Practice Ignition’s Top 50 Women in Accounting 2019
Code Like A Girl - Changing the face of technology in Australia
Techweek NZ: Our events in Hawke's Bay
Hiring for diversity
We use diverse channels to hire staff, including listing jobs on sites like Work180 and other job boards that promote diversity in hiring.
In 2020, we established new partnerships with Tech Returners in the UK and the Black Professionals in Tech Network in the Americas to tap into more diverse talent pools.
In previous years, we have:
piloted an internship with Specialisterne, an organisation which supports employment of people on the autism spectrum.
hired through non traditional pathways including the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre in Australia and the New Zealand Red Cross’s Pathways to Employment program.
participated in the TupuToa internship program in New Zealand.
We're proud to be a member of the Australian Network on Disability (AND). We're also proud to be a Level 2 Disability Confident Employer in the United Kingdom.
Check out the Xero careers page for more information about working at Xero.
Increasing LGBTQI+ inclusion and awareness
At Xero, we want to create a culture of belonging, where differences not only exist but where they are respected, supported and fully celebrated. It’s about ensuring our people can be their authentic self, and flourish in an environment where they feel accepted and know they belong. LGBTQI+ awareness and support is an important part of creating an inclusive culture at Xero.
Here are some of the ways that we promote LGBTQI+ awareness and inclusion at Xero:
Xero has achieved the Rainbow Tick in New Zealand in recognition of our inclusive workplace.
We provide LGBTQI+ awareness and education across some of our offices.
We provide options in our human resources system for employees to self-identify as non-binary or gender diverse.
We also encourage our people to indicate their pronouns in our internal IT systems and in their email signatures.
We recently installed all-gender bathroom signage in our Wellington headquarters to create a more inclusive and welcoming environment for trans, gender diverse and non-binary employees and guests. We plan to extend this initiative wherever possible in our offices globally.
Xero supports employee participation in local Pride parades under the Xero banner.
We are actively building out programmes that engage and contribute to thriving communities, such as our employee volunteering...
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We are always looking to deliver new initiatives, improving on our environmental and sustainability efforts, and developing a roadmap...
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Our purpose at Xero is to have a positive impact on the lives of people in small business, their advisors and communities around the world...
For Xero, building a fast-growing but sustainable business means taking responsibility for our social and environmental impact...