multi coloured heart and two people icons balanced on a scale
Posted by:

Helen Jaffa Head of People

on Thu 12 Oct 2023

Watershed's Balance and Belonging Data 2023

Posted on Thu 12 Oct 2023

Balance and Belonging is an approach we began in 2021 to understand the intersectional identities of the people who work at Watershed (Balance), and how their identities and backgrounds impact their experience of working with us (Belonging).

Today we are sharing the results of Watershed’s 2023 Balance & Belonging Survey. This report shares Watershed's Staff, Board & Freelancers Diversity & Inclusion Data from the past year. We use Culture Amp for the data collection, and this is the third year we have taken this approach. We recently won the Using Data category in the 2023 Digital Culture Awards for the work that we are doing.

“An exemplar in how to collect, use, present and interpret data in an ethical and inclusive way, with a clear grounding in the strategic aims of the organisation, but also with practical and tangible outcomes.” Katy Raines, Using Data Judge

Watershed's Balance and Belonging Data 2023

This year’s report contains a mixed picture – with some hard reading for us as an organisation. There are areas where we have made progress - there has been an increase in employees who identify as neurodivergent, non-binary or genderqueer, and those who identify as LGBQA+. We continue to be more balanced than the average %s across all NPOs in 2020/2021 (the most recent data available) in the areas of gender, disability and sexuality, whilst being in line with the average for racially minoritised employees.

Decreases in representation in comparison to our 2022 data include; representation of employees from Racially Minoritised backgrounds fell by 4% points as did representation of employees from working class backgrounds. Representation of caregivers fell from 24% to 18% and representation of employees with religion or faith fell from 11% to 8%.

In addition, some of the themes that have come out of this year’s Belonging data will inform the actions and priorities of our work. These themes have been pulled from the free text comments section of the survey, not shared in this report.

  • Decision Making
    We acknowledge that this is the second year running that we have scored low on this, and we are aware decision making looks different for everyone across the organisation. Our priority is understanding these low scores in more detail so we can take action that feels relevant to teams.
  • Speaking up
    Some teams need more clarity on ways to feed back and speak up about things that make them feel uncomfortable at work.
  • Reporting back on actions from Survey.
    We need to ensure there are consistent updates in all staff meetings but also in Line Managers and team meetings
  • Language
    We received feedback and comments about the use of jargon / corporate language in our internal communications and the way we describe our work. We will seek to use plain language and will encourage constant feedback to ensure we are adapting constantly.
  • Building and venue culture
    This theme focussed on the way we interact with one another across the building and how we use shared spaces. Specific examples included cleaning up shared office space and the engagement or lack of engagement between office-based teams and customer facing teams.

We are pleased that Tony Bhajam, Inclusion Producer will be working alongside me and the Executive Team on our internal inclusion work ensuring that we take the following actions that we believe are needed to make positive change:

Understanding Staff Experiences Better

We will work to find new ways of understanding the staff experience at Watershed in an on going way alongside the annual survey. We are in the process of establishing staff forums to provide staff with spaces to talk about what they might need. We have a number of speaking up mechanisms available for all staff members to report harm or uncomfortable behaviour they experience at work - these include CEO inbox, an anonymous reporting system, through Line Managers and through the union, BECTU. We will continue work to make sure all staff know when and how to use these. 

Defining Better Progression Routes

We have begun to establish an Employee Equity scheme, extending our coaching programme to all staff who identify as racially minoritised, disabled, Deaf or have a long term physical or mental health condition or are neurodivergent, supporting them with their career progression and to navigate the challenges they face in the sector.

Transparency and Engagement in Decision Making

We are reviewing how we train line managers and how each team shares and invite input into our decision making processes.

Increasing our Demographic Balance

We will support each Line Manager to understand the data and take action around the demographic balance of their teams.

We now have three years of data that is proving invaluable in helping us to continue to develop and learn and alongside this data we also have other conversations and feedback from across the organisation, including as already mentioned, exit interviews, our anonymous CEO inbox email, Line Managers meetings and team meetings all of which pool so many important data points for us to include in our work.

Please do have a read this year's report which also includes the details of our approach and if you would like any further information you can get in touch with us by emailing

Watershed's Balance and Belonging Data 2023

× Close

Help us make our website work better for you

We use Google Analytics to gather information on how our website is used. This information helps us to make changes to our website that improve the usefulness and overall experience for our visitors. If you would like to help us to make continuous improvements to our website, please allow us to set "first-party" cookies (only readable by us) so that we can distinguish visitors and gain greater insights.

Allow cookies for analytics Deny cookies for analytics