Summary: Using our business as a force for good has to start from the inside. Some practices have been around since the beginning, and others are brand new. Read the steps we're taking—and looking forward to taking—on this journey.
Document, document, document.
You can’t prove it if you can’t show it, right? Because we believe in a sustainable and inclusive economy, we were already doing a lot of things right. So, we started documenting our corporate policies that were already in alignment with B Corp status. These were easy wins for us that get us closer to the 80 points we need for B Lab’s certification assessment.
Equality means everyone
With our people working from home and in multiple locations, we wanted to make sure we were contributing fairly to their work environments. We took a hard look at our compensation and perks packages and adjusted those where it was necessary—like adding a monthly wifi stipend and annual home office stipend.
With our workforce distributed in the United States, Ireland, and Canada, we reassessed and reformed each region’s leave, benefits, and compensation packages to create equity.
We also did extensive research and analysis on our salary bands. Once that analysis was complete, we documented that information for our employees to see. Doing this led to greater transparency into how we pay and promote. It gave employees a place to go to learn those things on their own—creating a more fair and inclusive workplace by giving everyone the same information and opportunities.
But that’s not all. See below for a list of other steps we’ve taken towards our goal—as well as some things we’re looking forward to kicking off soon!
Things we’ve already done:
Recruitment and hiring
We’ve improved our recruitment and interview practices by posting job opportunities on BIPOC job boards and creating interview rubrics for standardized screening that avoids bias.
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
This year, the agency participated in in-depth DEI training with Bright + Early, and we have implemented explicit anti-discrimination policies. Our executive team also formed a DEI book club, focusing on anti-racism.
Reason One Mentorship & Scholarship Program
One of our largest initiatives, and one that our team has been very engaged in, is the Reason One Mentorship & Scholarship Program. The reality of our current climate and the stark inequities that exist for marginalized communities served as a wake-up call for our team, and challenged us to ask ourselves how we can actively affect positive change within our industry.
Black tech workers make up only 2.6% in Canada’s tech industry, and just 7% in the United States. This lack of diversity in the industry presents a barrier to innovation and exposes the harmful effect of racial bias in technology, which negatively impacts Black communities. In order to create a more equitable future in the field, we have to be active participants in providing equity to those working in our industry.
This program, launched in 2020, provides year-long mentorship as well as scholarships ranging from $10,000 to $1,000 to six Black tech students aged 17-35 in the Charleston, South Carolina, and Toronto, Ontario areas. Check out our amazing first class of scholars here.
Celebration and recognition
While we have always noted cultural holidays, we have taken a second look at how we celebrate and recognize diversity in our agency and the world at large. This year, we’ve marked Martin Luther King Day, Black History Month, and Pride Month with intentional activities like uplifting Black businesses, a LGBTQ2S+ film series, and fundraising through t-shirt sales (yes, you can get in on this!). The success of some of these initiatives have led us to find more educational and inclusive opportunities year-round.
We’ve updated our environmental policies and we offset carbon emissions through Cool Effect.
Reason One offers a remote work stipend including equipment and Wi-Fi.
We have a generous and inclusive parental leave policy, and we also offer breastfeeding support.
Giving back is part of our DNA. Reason One offers all employees the equivalent of two working days to volunteer with their charity of choice.
Things we’re excited to do next
In addition to joining the B Corp community, we are also making plans to be a part of 1% for the Planet, a certification that is given to businesses that meet a high level of commitment to protect the planet and donate 1% of annual sales or salary to environmental causes.
We also realize that some of the actions we are taking now are just in their infancy. In fact, it's exciting to look to the future to how they can be more impactful, and create more good as they mature and grow. And we take more small actions each and every day, as we consistently assess how to be good stewards of our planet, and a positive force in the lives of each of our teammates. We do not always get it right, yet we pursue rightness with each opportunity we're given.
Living our purpose
Why are we doing all this? Because we envision a global economy that uses business as a force for good. We’re working day in and day out to be a part of that force. Our pursuit of B Corp status is just a way to keep us progressing towards that goal and to showcase our commitments to those beliefs. Stay tuned for more updates! Got questions? Reach us here.