New Data from NCHRA’s HR West and Waggl Indicate that Cultivating Diversity in the Workplace is Essential for Driving Innovation

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“Voice of the Workplace” pulse highlights the biggest advantages of building a diverse workforce

Logo for the HR West 2017 conference

Attendees of the HR West Conference participated in the "Voice of the Workplace" Pulse by NCHRA and Waggl

"Organizations that continue to actively commit to cultivating ‘cultural intelligence’ will be generally better equipped to innovate," said Greg Morton, CEO, NCHRA.

The Northern California Human Resource Association(NCHRA), and Waggl, the most human way for organizations to crowdsource feedback, today released new data from their joint “Voice of the Workplace” pulse on the subject of diversity in the workplace.

The “Voice the Workplace” pulse was sent by NCHRA to thousands of HR professionals using Waggl’s crowdsourced listening platform from February 3-March 8, 2017, including the attendees of the HR West 2017 conference at the Oakland Convention Center March 6-8, 2017. An overwhelming 96% percent responded that they believe cultivating diversity in the workplace is essential for driving innovation. Responses were relatively consistent across various demographics including age, gender, region, and size of organization. In addition, 71% percent of the participants said that they feel their organization is strongly committed to fostering diversity. Among respondents under the ages of 31, 100% felt that diversity is essential and believed that their organizations are strongly committed to fostering it.

“Despite the current politics of borders and immigration, it is generally accepted that companies benefit from cultivating a diverse workforce, but it can be difficult to measure or quantify the impact of diversity on an organization’s ability to innovate,” said Greg Morton, CEO, NCHRA. “However, as this pulse indicates, we’ve all witnessed cases in which diversity has directly driven innovation by creating an environment where ‘out of the box’ ideas are heard and encouraged. We’ve also seen situations where, without sufficient knowledge or training about culture diversity, managers can inadvertently fail to cultivate trust and respect in the workplace without even being aware of the consequences. It appears organizations that continue to actively commit to cultivating ‘cultural intelligence’ will be generally better equipped to innovate.”

In this pulse, HR West and Waggl also posed the question, “What is the biggest advantage of building a diverse workforce?” and distilled crowdsourced responses into a ranked list. The top 3 answers were:

  • “With a diverse workforce (age, gender, ethnicity, ability, etc.) one brings together a multitude of thoughts, ideas, experience levels that has a greater potential to drive innovation, and promote constructive debate to move an organization forward.”
  • “Having multiple perspectives encourages management to see things differently, and can help enormously with problem-solving. It also helps us to avoid ‘group think.’”
  • “It takes diverse thoughts & opinions to create exceptional products & services but more importantly it takes a diverse & inclusive workforce to build the foundational values of trust & respect which are the bedrocks of amazing and enduring cultures.”

Waggl is designed to help organizations to create a culture of innovation by creating real-time, 2-way dialogue that can be used to surface ideas, collect authentic feedback, and build consensus. Unlike traditional survey and polling platforms, Waggl engages participants by asking open-ended questions where favorite responses can be “voted up.” The platform enables fast, frequent, focused conversation on virtually any topic.

“Cultivating diversity is more important than ever, in our current era of business disruption and change,” said Michael Papay, Co-founder and CEO, Waggl. “The benefits of diversity become more evident as organizations start to open up lines of transparent communication and encourage authentic relationships between employees; creating an open forum to build connection, collaboration and alignment across the organization.”

For additional information, please visit Waggl at HR West 2017 in the West Hall of the Oakland Convention Center March 6-8, 2017. Co-Founder CEO Michael Papay is scheduled to present a session entitled “The Power of Listening,” on Wednesday, March 8 from 10:35-11:50 a.m.

The Northern California HR Association, one of the nation’s largest HR associations, has been advancing organizations through human resources since 1960. Delivering nearly 200 programs annually, the association is dedicated to connecting human resources professionals with practice resources, leading California-specific training, legal and legislative developments, quality service providers, and each other—forming career-long networks and partnerships.

About HR West
Produced by NCHRA, HR West®: HR in the Most Innovative Place on Earth is the premier HR conference on the West Coast. More than 80 concurrent sessions (most for HR recertification credit) and special tracks for executives, HR & technology, startups and small business, plus evergreen topics like employment law, benefits and talent management will be offered March 6-8, 2017. Visit Follow #HRWest17 and #HRInnovators on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

About Waggl
Waggl is the most human way for organizations to crowdsource feedback. Named after the dance that bees do in a hive to transmit important information very quickly, Waggl lives at the intersection of two organizational realities: Companies want an engaged workforce and employees want to know that their opinions count. Waggl goes beyond the traditional survey by offering an extremely easy way to listen to many voices at once within an organization for the purpose of making it better. Waggl’s real-time listening platform creates a transparent, authentic two-way dialogue that gives people a voice, distills insights, and unites organizations through purpose. With a highly seasoned management team and a Board including esteemed executives from Glassdoor, SuccessFactors, and Coupa, Waggl is an innovative industry leader helping companies of all sizes to succeed by building a listening culture. For more information, please visit:


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