Tech Your Place makes diversity and inclusion among start-ups a priority

By Philippe Guerrier | The

| Good at work

Under the aegis of equal opportunity associations Diversidays and Mozaïk Foundation, the Tech Your Place initiative aims to promote diversity and inclusion in start-ups. Because there is a “systemic problem” according to Anthony Babkine, founder of Diversidays.

Anthony Babkine, co-founder of the equal opportunities association Diversidays – © DR

“There is a real challenge in changing recruitment criteria codes to prevent discriminatory practices and bring out a new generation of talent. Hence our movement Tech Your Place »expressed Anthony Babkin, co-founder of the equal opportunities association Variations.

5 recommendations in favor of inclusion and diversity in start-ups were developed by Diversidays, PwC France and Maghreb and Occurrence:

  • Support diversity and inclusion causes at the highest level of the company ;
  • Use the recruiting process to diversify talent ;
  • Se support to the actors involved and adequate tools;
  • Link investment funds through commitment clauses for diversity and inclusion in equity investment of start-ups;
  • Enforce diversity and inclusion criteria as part of the next Next 40 and Next 120 rankings

A study on the perspective of French vis-à-vis start-ups recruiting

The 3 partner organizations conducted a study titled “Inclusion and diversity in start-ups: can we do better? » and presented on October 17, 2022. It is available for download on the PwC website.

This study examines the French perspective on recruiting start-ups and identifies ecosystem best practices in terms of diversity and inclusion:

  • 81% of French workers have a positive opinion of start-ups.
  • Among the criteria likely to restrict recruitment in start-ups, employees cited diploma level (50%), age (48%), geographical origin (16%), social origin (15%) ), ethnic origin and gender (equality at 14%);
  • 39% of start-up employees say they have been victims of discrimination, and 40% have witnessed it.

“This study shows a systemic problem. Today, a certain number of talents will find it difficult or even invisible when entering start-ups. It is a paradox when many people express their desire to get closer to the professions offered in this ecosystem”evoke Anthony Babkine.

Start-ups: “Diversity and inclusion should no longer be the bad relationship of recruitment” (Anthony Babkine)

He cites several obstacles that persist:

  • they difficulty in accessing areas for people with disabilities;
  • they job offers integration discrimination criteria ;
  • a lack of openness to telework that will promote life in the regions;
  • a too similar of recruited profiles.

“The start-up ecosystem is at the beginning of a shift towards greater diversity and inclusion. It is necessary but still too discreet. Many tech companies need to act,” rouses Anthony Babkine.

“Diversity and inclusion should no longer be the bad relationship of recruitment. They should be seen as an opportunity and an opportunity, especially through the emergence of second chance digital schools. However, today, there are too many exclusion criteria for entrepreneurship to be representative and for the company to be a true talent incubator. »

“An initiative like the program French Tech Springboard, supported by Diversidays as an operator, aims to show that talent can come from anywhere in the territory. Because access to financing for all the talents who want to create their start-ups is not easy, due to the lack of variety of supported projects. This fund was set up because the reading grid of certain funds was considered too conventional, which can be attributed to the similarity of the profiles of the creators of start-ups in the digital sector. »

Tech Your Place: 42 companies joined the program

Set up in December 2020 in the form of an “emanation” with the Mozaïk Foundation to promote “inclusive recruitment”, the Tech Your Place movement offers start-ups and investment funds (VC):

  • a diagnostics based on clear indicators,
  • an establishment of a strategy of inclusion and diversity,
  • of meetings with experts,
  • of exchange between colleagues,
  • support for recruitment new talents.

“We want the initiative to be a benchmark in the start-up ecosystem”, evoke Anthony Babkine. Since the launch of Tech Your Place, 42 companies have joined the program.

12 investment funds are dedicated to diversity and inclusion

Investment funds, which finance start-ups, are invited to become stakeholders in the Tech Your Place program. In their funding operations, they are encouraged to consider diversity and inclusion criteria through 5 recommendations:
• Include an “integration and diversity” audit dimension in the due diligence phase (acquisition audit conducted by the potential buyer);
• Include dedicated KPIs in the reporting requested from start-ups in fund portfolios;
• Raising awareness, training and supporting start-ups on the subject;
• Implement recommendations to improve inclusion and diversity within VCs;
• Promote investment in start-ups whose founders “contain diversity”.

During the meeting organized in Paris on 17/10/2022 by Diversidays in the presence of Jean-Noël Barrot, Minister Delegate in charge of Digital Transition and Telecommunications, 12 funds dedicated to aspects of diversity and inclusion to be included in shareholder agreements signed with start-ups during the financing operation: Alter Equity, Daphni, Educapital, Eurazeo, Isai, Parquest, Raise, Ring Capital, Sagard, Serena, 360 Capital and Galion.exe.

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