Supporting our people

Because of the pandemic, from a professional enrichment and career development perspective, materials and resources needed to be delivered completely virtually. This led to an increase in the learning that employees were able to do across the business.

This year saw a 212 per cent increase in the amount of learning taking place across the organization from the previous year, to some extent because resources and experiences were so readily available online. Partnering with LinkedIn Learning helped employees to access these resources wherever, whenever.

Among other learning opportunities, Oxford University Press employees were provided with:

  • Learning playlists for wellbeing and home working
  • Virtual coaching circles and mentoring programmes
  • Resilience and managing change workshops
  • Virtual skills development across product and marketing and sales, including managing virtual customer meetings

Supporting our leaders to manage remotely was a priority. We brought our online management essentials platform to life with Management Matters workshops on topics such as managing remotely, giving feedback, and performance coaching, for more than 300 of our people managers.

We created a Wellbeing Charter which pledges a number of commitments from Oxford University Press to all staff, offering leadership support, creating a community that provides a safe working environment, and ensuring that by upholding key principles, everybody’s wellbeing is actively supported.

Looking at Diversity and Inclusion (D&I), we have made substantial progress throughout the year. To understand what’s important to colleagues, we facilitated 32 listening lessons across 14 locations with more than 1,000 employees. The insights from these informed our future strategy to reflect, respect and represent the world around us. Over and above, the regional leadership teams committed to nuanced country specific goals, strengthening Oxford University Press’s global D&I agenda. These leadership teams are now supported by four more D&I committees to drive diversity, inclusion, and empowerment. To track and report progress in our journey, we also took our first steps towards baselining diversity demographics and measuring inclusion through Inclusion Index.

Oxford University Press Europe signed up to the Diversity Charter, committing to support and promulgate the principles of inclusion, diversity, equal opportunities, and non-discrimination in the workplace. This has enabled Oxford University Press to:

  • Make visible our commitment to diversity and inclusion
  • Exchange good practices and establish relationships with other organizations with aligned goals
  • Fulfil four of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals

We also ran Global Inclusion Week internally, with seven speaker sessions, attended by more than 650 staff members. The Global Inclusion Programme, which was launched to tackle unconscious bias, continues to be well-supported, with 56 per cent of staff having attended it and 94 per cent saying they would recommend it to colleagues.



employees took part in listening sessions across 14 locations


of employees said they would recommend our Global Inclusion Programme to their colleagues

For Black History Month, among other initiatives one highlight was organizing a joint book club event with Oxford Diverse Book Club. From the chosen book, Girl, Woman, Other by Bernadine Evaristo, discussions were held that increased awareness and understanding of marginalized groups highlighted in the book and supported an understanding of the importance of a diverse workforce by widening perspectives.

To celebrate International Women’s Day, we ran nine internal events globally and five externally, engaging more than 1,500 employees. This included a popular panel discussion around sexism in the English Language. We also announced a new partnership with Women on Boards: NextGenDirectors, helping people to strengthen and optimize their skills and experience and to think differently about their development. In Spain, the team focused on the history of women's milestones in the past, and women who were underappreciated with the Women in Shadow campaign.

Also, as part of our programme of activities for colleagues, we hosted a First step to Trans Inclusion workshop with Stonewall. Through our partnership with Stonewall, we have held a number of workshops throughout the year, helping increase awareness and representation for Oxford University Press’ LGBTQ+ community.

And as part of LGBTQ+ history month, we hosted a discussion by the producers of The Log Books podcast. This takes historical records of calls to the LGBTQ+ switchboard to look at stories and themes that resonate with the LGBTQ+ community at Oxford University Press. In June 2021, we also ran numerous initiatives to celebrate Pride Month.

Supporting our people case study

Global Inclusion Programme moves fully online