HRTech Interview with Charlotte Dales, Co-founder and CEO at Inclusively

How can B2B SaaS companies adopt and implement better DEI practices? Charlotte Dales, Co-founder and CEO at Inclusively shares pointers on what can help:


Hi Charlotte, tell us about yourself and more about your role at Inclusively…how has Inclusively evolved over the years?

I began my career at Deutsche Bank in London. After five years, I left to start a mobile payment app for restaurants and bars with a friend, which we sold to American Express in 2017. Around that time, my cousin, the first licensed facialist with Down syndrome in Florida, inspired me. Seeing how minor adjustments made her workplace more accessible, I wanted to leverage technology to help large employers do the same for a wide range of disabilities and mental health challenges.

Inclusively started as a hiring platform for people with disabilities, using AI to identify and present necessary accommodations seamlessly to employers.

Last year, we significantly evolved. We expanded our technology to help organizations meet the diverse needs of all employees. Today’s workforce expects personalized experiences, is more aware of their needs, and COVID has accelerated the demand for flexibility and accommodations.

By streamlining the process for all employees to request what they need, we make it cost-efficient for employers to meet these needs, creating a more inclusive workplace. Personalizing the employee experience not only enhances productivity and retention but also supports diverse talent, making DEI efforts more tangible and essential for businesses.

We’d love to hear more about Inclusively and Salesforce’s partnership and how it enables better inclusive norms at work?

 Our work with Salesforce began as a pilot program to work with their accessibility team to better understand and accommodate employees. Now an official partnership, we’ve rolled out our AI-driven interface to ensure Salesforce staff can easily and anonymously find, access or request benefits that will help them better show up at work.

Every organization, whether small or large, should be prioritizing employees’ happiness and satisfaction at work because ultimately, this leads to productivity and retention.

This partnership allows us to provide our full product suite and platform to Salesforce, sharing aggregated feedback and data that helps their team better understand how accessibility benefits are being used.

Working with industry leaders like Salesforce signals a promising trajectory for Inclusively, as we’re set out to help large enterprises implement long-term diverse hiring practices and accommodations at scale.

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Can you talk about some of the DEI practices in B2B SaaS that have piqued your interest?

In the B2B SaaS sector, some DEI practices have really stood out to me, but I’ve realized that focusing solely on DEI is addressing a symptom rather than the root problem. The larger issue is that companies struggle to personalize the employee experience at scale.

For a long time, businesses have aimed to be inclusive, yet the underlying challenge has been creating adaptable work environments that cater to individual needs. The current workforce, especially the new generation, expects a high degree of personalization in their professional lives, just as they do in other aspects of their lives. This expectation is coupled with the rapid advancement of AI technology, making it feasible to address these needs on a large scale.

One of the most significant breakthroughs in business is the ability to boost productivity by tailoring work environments to individual needs. When companies can naturally adapt to each employee, it not only enhances productivity but also inherently promotes diversity. Personalizing the employee experience means everyone can thrive, regardless of their background or abilities, leading to a more diverse and inclusive workplace. This approach shifts the focus from merely addressing DEI as a checkbox to fundamentally changing how we support and empower our workforce, resulting in a more innovative and dynamic business environment.

How can B2B leaders foster more inclusivity across different levels of functions and work, from marketing and campaign portrayals to everyday work formats?

 B2B leaders can foster inclusivity by adopting universal design principles, which address everyone’s needs rather than targeting specific demographics individually. This approach ensures that processes, products, and services are accessible and beneficial to all.

Inclusive marketing should represent diverse individuals, breaking down stereotypes and fostering a sense of belonging. In everyday work formats, creating adaptable environments with flexible options and accessible communication tools helps everyone perform at their best.

By focusing on universal design, companies create a more inclusive, productive, and innovative environment. Employees feel supported and valued, leading to better outcomes for the business. This shift from individual solutions to universal inclusivity is essential for a truly inclusive workplace.  It also reduces inefficiencies by building custom experiences and products demographic by demographic.

What are some of the biggest deterrents to creating an inclusive workplace culture in your view?

The biggest deterrents to creating an inclusive workplace culture are two major misconceptions: 1) employees need to disclose personal information to receive support, and 2) fostering inclusivity is time-consuming, resource-intensive, and costly.

In reality, companies already invest in various products, services, benefits, and technologies that can address individual needs. These solutions are often available to all employees, but they might not know what to look for, and company resources can be hard to access.

By leveraging technology to make these resources more accessible, companies can significantly enhance the employee experience and gain valuable, actionable data. This approach simplifies the process, making inclusivity more achievable and efficient.

Five tips you’d share with younger tech companies at the early stages of building a strong DEI work format?

 Implement Universal Design: Create processes and products that cater to all employees, ensuring accessibility and inclusivity from the start. This saves time and resources while promoting efficiency.

  • Leverage Technology: Use technology to make resources and benefits easily accessible to everyone, enhancing the employee experience and gathering valuable data for continuous improvement.
  • Set Clear DEI Metrics: Establish measurable DEI goals and track progress. Make DEI accountability a part of performance reviews and company evaluations to ensure everyone contributes.
  • Inclusive Marketing and Communication: Ensure marketing materials and internal communications reflect diverse individuals to foster a sense of belonging and promote understanding.
  • Focus on Business Benefits: Emphasize the tangible advantages of DEI, such as higher productivity, better retention, and increased innovation. Highlight DEI as a competitive advantage, not just a feel-good initiative.

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Charlotte Dales is Co-founder and CEO at Inclusively


Inclusively helps take your employee experience, productivity, and retention to the next level. The platform helps you unearth new talent and unlock the potential of your existing employees without disruption. Starting with the disability community, the platform provides integrated access to one million diverse candidates for roles based on candidate skills, experience, and accommodations.