Building a stronger Asana with Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging

Imagen del colaborador - Equipo de AsanaTeam Asana
4 de diciembre de 2023
4 min de lectura
Building a stronger Asana with Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging

At Asana, our mission is to help humanity thrive by enabling the world’s teams to work together effortlessly.

At a time when the key tenets of diversity, inclusion and belonging are facing increased pushback across the world, Asana’s commitment to this work has not, and will not, waiver. 

Since the establishment of our dedicated Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging (DIB) team shortly after Asana’s founding, we‘ve remained steadfast in our vision: Co-create an environment that recognizes and values all Asanas, leverages their uniqueness, and empowers them to do their best work together, in service of our customers and achieving our mission. 

We do this not only because we think it's the right thing to do, but because we know it drives business success. Diverse teams are more innovative, and they are better positioned to identify and respond to diverse customer needs.

This also holds true as we navigate the current macroeconomic environment. No matter the conditions, we’re committed to building a workplace where high performance and deep belonging go hand in hand. 

We’ve continued to prioritize this work over the last year. Learn more about the programs our team co-created, the results of our strategic initiatives, and our long-term commitments to ensure everyone at Asana feels that they belong.

Building Team Asana with equitable outcomes in mind

We are committed to building a representative workforce that reflects our diverse user base and is diverse in identity, background, and perspective. We review both qualitative and quantitative data to track our efforts, and we share our representation progress through annual updates at the end of our financial year. 

Over the last year, our Black and Latinx representation in US offices has remained steady at 5% and 7% respectively, and we will continue to focus on growing these areas. Globally, our Women, Transgender, and Gender Non-Conforming (WTGNC) representation continues to be strong, with 47% of our managers identifying as members of this group.

As we continue developing hiring practices with diversity, inclusion, and belonging in mind, our talent acquisition team leverages a range of strategies and initiatives, including:

  • Strategic sourcing to build equitable representation in our candidate pipelines. 

  • Our apprenticeship program, AsanaUP, provides a pathway to roles at Asana for individuals with non-traditional backgrounds, with an emphasis on engaging individuals from traditionally marginalized communities.

  • Our Inclusivity, Diversity, and Equity for Asana Leadership (IDEAL) policy requires that at least one candidate from an underrepresented ethnic group (in the U.S.) and at least one non-male candidate (global) is interviewed for every open people manager position.

However, equitable representation cannot be achieved solely through investment in hiring practices. It’s also achieved by programs that support retention through community, career development, and growth. 

Ensuring inclusion and belonging are integrated into our programs  

Over the last year, we invested more than ever in programs that support career development and growth for all Asanas. We believe in the value of sponsorship, and this year launched Catalyst, a 12-month leadership development program that supports employees through deep partnerships with our senior leaders. 

In 2023, we partnered with The Cru to empower our WTGNC workforce. The program aims to support employees in realizing their development goals through a structured peer coaching model.  

We’re also equipping our managers with the skills to lead inclusively. Over the last year, we piloted our Mission-Driven Leadership Program, designed to develop our managers into champions of inclusion and equity. 

Asana’s seven active employee resource groups (ERGs) are focused on ensuring equitable outcomes for their members, creating safe communities, supporting career development, recruiting efforts, and business outcomes. In 2023 we established Raíz, for our Latinx/e and Hispanic community and allies. Alongside that work, we launched our Global ERG Mentorship Program, matching ERG members with Asana mentors to support their acclimation, retention, and success.

Asana also has several employee-driven communities for Asanas with shared identities, experiences or interests, as well as their allies. They include:

  • Asanable: Asanas with disabilities 

  • Gigabyte: Community for WTGNC Asanas in technical roles

  • Parents and Caregivers: Asanas with children and older family members under their care

  • Thrive: Asanas focused on mental health

Ensuring equitable outcomes through the lens of diversity, inclusion, and belonging is also done through the evaluation of our compensation practices. Asana continues to conduct a semiannual pay equity study, in partnership with a third party to examine our compensation outcomes across the organization. We share the results internally with all Asanas, including our ERGs. If we identify statistically significant gaps, we use a dedicated budget to close them and investigate the root cause of the difference.

Setting our teams up for success

We’re committed to driving high impact and deep belonging within our teams at Asana, rejecting any false tradeoff between those two goals. Infusing this within our teams ensures a ripple effect through the entire organization. 

In order for us to work together effectively, we must cultivate trust and build psychological safety within our teams. Without it, people are less likely to deliver candid feedback, ask questions, and propose innovative solutions—all of which are hallmarks of highly engaged and high-performing teams. To support this, we invited all managers and teams to psychological safety workshops, supplying them with the necessary tools and resources to enhance psychological safety across the organization.

It’s important to our business that all Asanas feel a sense of belonging. It allows employees to be engaged, do their best work, and help us to build an intentional culture that drives business outcomes. 

We measure belonging through our annual employee engagement survey. This feedback helps the company grow and improve, just as feedback between team members allows our teams to grow and improve. Feedback is fuel for Asana employees to do transformative work. That’s why we bolstered our culture of continuous, constructive feedback through resources to coach, grow, and develop Asanas throughout the year.

Looking ahead

We understand that Asana doesn’t exist in a vacuum. We aim to work more broadly toward the ideal of a fair, equitable, and resilient world beyond our doors. 

We do this through our product, by enabling teams working across industries and sectors to do their best work and help humanity thrive. We periodically offer product grants to organizations working on particularly urgent or intractable issues that impact our business, such as groups dedicated to ending racism or bridging the digital divide in the technology industry. 

Internally, Asana’s ERGs also have the opportunity to raise employee donations (matched by Asana) for organizations impacting issues they care about. We’ve also begun building our supplier diversity efforts through measurement of diversity characteristics within our supplier base and educating Asanas about our commitment to supplier diversity. 

Everything we do at Asana is in service of our mission. We’re committed to growing a diverse team and cultivating an environment where everyone can thrive. It’s essential to our success as a company and our enduring impact on the world. 

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