Bernardi congratulates Atlassian

October 05, 2018

Software giant Atlassian has dumped diversity from its corporate lingo, saying it intends to move towards a workforce defined by more than gender and race - a move applauded by Conservative Party leader Cory Bernardi.

Senator Bernardi tweeted this morning,"Congratulations Atlassian. Now it is time for governments to do the same and end identity politics. It only divides rather than unites us."

The Australian reports, the company yesterday said it was moving “beyond diversity” to build balanced teams where all workers felt a sense of belonging.

“It’s not about how many people of a specific demographic are represented … it’s about balancing perspectives across teams,” Atlassian said.

Atlassian’s global head of diversity and belonging, Aubrey Blanche (pictured), added the highest-performing teams included people with diverse perspectives and ways of problem-solving.

But the company needed to think “beyond defining diversity in terms of gender and race”, Ms Blanche said. She has used the phrase “diversity fatigue” to describe the frustration some feel at the “all talk, no action” approach towards what appears an insurmountable issue, saying people have come to associate the word diversity with only minority groups.

“When you tell people you’re trying to diversify the workforce, you’re saying people from a majority group don’t count and you’re trying to build a future without them,” Ms Blanche said.

“People from majority groups are part of diversity, there are imbalances but they can go both ways. You can have a team where the majority are women — that’s an imbalance.” According to Atlassian’s latest employment data, men make up most of the managers in IT, marketing, customer support and software, while women dominate in HR and finance.

Atlassian boosted the number of women hired in leadership roles by less than 1 per cent to 27.1 per cent in the past year, putting it above average for senior management across all industries. It also increased the proportion in technical roles from 14.6 per cent to 17 per cent and grew its workforce over 40 from 19 per cent to 22 per cent.

Atlassian’s long-term goals were for its offices to reflect the communities in which they operated, Ms Blanche said.

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