Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Bench

The change we want to see starts with our own actions

Bench doesn’t work unless we create opportunities and build pathways for greater equity. Through our work, the people we hire and the learning we do every day, Bench is committed to building a more just and inclusive society.

Each quarter, we provide an update on the progress we’ve made, and where we’ve fallen short. And while we acknowledge that decades of injustices will not be undone by one company, we believe it is the actions of all of us, every single day, in every way that we can, that will usher in change. It is our mission to help enable each and every business owner to thrive in their chosen field. This is about continuously holding ourselves accountable for the role we play in systems where racism and discrimination exist.

Commitment Updates

We owe this to you, the people who we work with and to the communities we live in and support. Let’s each take a moment to stay accountable and commit to maintaining momentum on this critical and ongoing journey.

We welcome you to visit this space every quarter to check back on our progress toward creating systemic equity.

April 2023 to June 2023

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Accessibility at Bench

Around 15% of Bench’s workforce comprises people who are neurodiverse and living with either apparent or non-apparent disabilities. Over the last year, the DEI team recognized an opportunity to better improve our system to make them more accessible.

Our areas of focus began to encompass the integration of reducing and eliminating barriers to inclusion (accommodations) and building proactive and inclusively designed practices and environments at Bench that benefit everyone, regardless of their ability (accessibility).

In July, we shared Bench’s first comprehensive accessibility guide for people leaders called Benchmarks of Inclusion. This guide is a foundational step that sets us up to do MORE for accessibility at Bench. Its purpose is to provide people leaders with information, strategies and best practices for consistently creating inclusive and accommodating work environments for Benchmates with disabilities.

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Inclusive leadership

Our senior leaders continue to meet monthly to support. We have adopted the Inclusive Leadership framework which will guide how we integrate DEI into all we do and how we lead. Inclusive Leadership emphasizes the importance of senior leaders connecting DEI efforts to strategic business priorities, and then modeling the behavior that would help to achieve desired outcomes—making inclusion a deliberate and conscious effort.

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Annual calendar and stances

We are committed to cultivating a workplace that belongs to us all—and that includes creating visibility and support structures for celebrations and commemorations that are significant to our Benchmates. Designed to be much more than a calendar of “various holidays in the year” to acknowledge, the Annual Calendar project is rooted in the understanding that equity deserving communities are not necessarily underrepresented in the population as much as they are under-acknowledged. Through dedicating a space for celebration, education and learning, we are co-creating an environment that prioritizes the belonging and wellbeing of Benchmates who have experienced marginalization.

Here’s what we got up to:

  • Asian History Month
    In Canada, one of the most remarkable aspects of Asian history is the cultural exchange that has taken place between different communities and regions. From the establishment of Chinatowns to the influence of South Asian music and food on mainstream culture, Asian Canadians and Pacific Islanders have always been in dialogue with one another, enriching each other’s traditions and ideas. In May, we took the time to appreciate and honour it all! We kicked off the month with a virtual Tai Chi class hosted by our Asian/Pacific Islander (API) Inclusion Affinity Group.

  • National Indigenous History Month
    This National Indigenous History Month, we embraced the value of community and interdependence by participating in a Paddling Together workshop hosted by Kathi Camilleri, which inspired the vision of ‘community’ within Bench and focused on lateral kindness.

  • Pride Month
    This Pride Month, we invested in building and sustaining community. This came alive in how we highlighted and uplifted local small business owners from drag artists to community workshop facilitators and QTBIPOC entrepreneurs, whom we hosted for a live comedy and drag show. Huge thanks to the talented performers, Joanne Tsung, Kara Juku, Batty B. Banks, and Aria Rich! We encourage all of you to follow and support their work.
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Representation in the hiring process

We are committed to greater representation of women and BIPOC in our senior leadership roles. In order to achieve this goal, we now have a specialized role on our recruitment team who will solely focus on sourcing diverse candidates.

Bench is using diversity sourcing as a process to recruit candidates that are underrepresented within our company in order to create a workplace that reflects the world we live in. This does not mean we are haphazardly hiring people to fill diversity gaps. We are approaching diversity sourcing in a systematic process where we use data to determine what groups are currently represented and create a plan to address any shortfalls in staffing.

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Gender representation in Engineering, Product, and Design teams

Our leaders in Engineering, Product, and Design (EPD) continue to prioritize gender representation on their teams. Representation on teams has increased from 31% to 47% and representation of women in senior roles on the EPD teams has increased from 31% to 40%. Our hope is that this reinforces greater and greater empowerment and growth for the women and genderqueer folks on our EPD teams.

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Where we’ve fallen short

Gender pay equity

In the last quarter, our unadjusted pay gap increased by $0.04—from $0.15 to $0.19. This quarter it dropped to $0.18. We are hopeful that through new, clearly defined executive leadership DEI representation commitments in FY23 (including the already more intentional succession and development planning through our extended leadership team), we will address this shortcoming head-on in the year ahead.

Our Commitment to You

We will continue to provide quarterly updates on our progress towards becoming an anti-racist and anti-discriminatory company. We owe that to you, the people who work here, and our community. Doing so holds us accountable, and ensures that we maintain momentum on this critical and ongoing journey.

Thanks for being here with us. As always, please let us know if you have feedback, questions, or suggestions.


As America's largest professional bookkeeping service for small businesses, we are uniquely positioned to offer valuable resources to minority-owned businesses. This page will continue to be updated as we add more resources.

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*When we say women, we mean all women. Particularly trans, queer, BIPOC, and other women with intersecting identities.

We acknowledge that Bench headquarters is located on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the Coast Salish Peoples, including the territories of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations.