Inclusion at the heart of mutuality

Inclusion is at the heart of our mutual purpose and as our members’ needs change, we’re committed to building an inclusive society that leaves no-one behind. That means playing our part in building an inclusive society, which people, regardless of their diversity, background or circumstance, have access to and can fully participate in.

Building an inclusive culture where everyone can thrive

Internally, our aim is to build an inclusive culture where everyone can thrive and for our Society to reflect the diversity of the wider communities we serve. We describe this as our inclusion mission, and it forms one of our Mutual Good Commitments.

Our philosophy is inclusion first. We want our people to feel valued for who they are and be empowered to thrive, bringing out the best in themselves and in others. That’s inclusion and diversity in the truest sense. We also need a diverse mix of talented people who think differently and have different skills, experiences and backgrounds to help us support the communities we serve, today and tomorrow.

Sustainable progress in the right way

This provides a strong galvanising force for our inclusion and diversity (I&D) strategy which the Board and leadership team are committed to driving forward. We’re focused on long-term, sustainable progress and as the world around us evolves, so too will our ambitions and what we do.

We’re introducing inclusion measures to assess our progress and complement our existing diversity measures which we aspire to meet by 2028 or sooner. These measures are tracked and reported to our leadership team and the Board. We’ve also updated our PRIDE values to make our commitment to I&D more explicit and to help our people understand the role we all play.

You can find further information on our inclusion and diversity strategy, how we’ll measure our progress and our employee network groups below:

Our approach to inclusion & diversity

Find out more about our mission, philosophy and what we’re doing.

Measuring our progress

We’re improving how we capture data and insights and turning that into action. Find out more about:

Our employee network groups

Our 8 employee networks work together to form a ‘United Network’, which aims to use the power of the collective to have a bigger impact on inclusion and intersectionality at Nationwide.

Uplifting people’s wellbeing and enabling them to thrive

Wellbeing and our ethic of care are at the heart of the way we do things and are a key part of what makes us Nationwide.

Our aspiration is to make sure Nationwide is a place which uplifts people’s wellbeing and enables them to thrive. We want our people to be able to be their best selves and flourish in all aspects of their lives. That’s wellbeing in the broadest sense.

We’ll do this by ensuring wellbeing is designed into our people experience and strategy as we re-imagine the future of work, enabling our leaders to create the conditions for their teams to thrive and perform at their best and empowering people to take care of their own wellbeing.

We’re also introducing strategic wellbeing measures to assess our progress, and these measures will be tracked and reported to our leadership team and the Board.

Supporting our people’s wellbeing during the pandemic

Through the impact of the pandemic, we’ve all been reminded of the importance of wellbeing. So, we made an early commitment to our colleagues: we’ll put your physical and mental wellbeing first, and we’ll make sure you have the time and the tools to take care of one another.

We listened to our people, using their feedback to shape and adapt our response. We increased flexibility and support, raised awareness of the challenges people may face and the tools and education available to help, changed our ways of working to encourage better wellbeing and kept the conversation about wellbeing at the heart of our communications throughout. Some examples of what we did:

Unmind app

In May 2020, we launched a partnership with Unmind, providing all colleagues with access to a digital workplace mental health platform that empowers colleagues to proactively measure, understand and improve their mental wellbeing.

Whether it’s improving sleep, nurturing relationships, reducing stress or managing anxiety, there are scientifically backed tools and training to help.

Two of Unmind’s co-founders joined us for leadership wellbeing webinars this year.

And in November 2020, we also added Unmind’s ‘Plus 1’ feature, so all our people can give free access to 1 family member or friend. This is important as we recognise the knock-on impact friends and family can have on colleague well-being.

Healthy Mind Champions

In December 2020, we introduced a new support network of trained Healthy Mind Champions.

By March 2021, we had trained 300 (and climbing) Champions to deepen their understanding of mental health and wellbeing, how they can support others and help build a mentally healthy workplace.

We want to encourage open conversations about mental health and provide ‘in the moment’ support when colleagues are experiencing poor mental health or wellbeing.

The network also aims to equip colleagues to take proactive and preventative steps to look after their own and others’ wellbeing.

Performance ratings

With all the additional pressures and stresses we have all been facing, it was important that we look at how we could make the way we work a little easier on everyone.

One of the ways we did this was by changing the 2020/21 performance management process to one that prioritised wellbeing.

We’re proud of what each and every one of us has achieved, and there were no 2020/21 performance ratings, other than a small selection that are needed for regulatory purposes.

Our employee networks have played a critical role in helping us respond to the pandemic and have led the way on several impactful changes, including:

Kinda volunteer service

Enable, our disability network, in response to the needs of their 600+ active network members, helped launch Kinda – a volunteering service digital tool enabling colleagues to support one another by delivering shopping, medical supplies or office equipment.

Little Star awards

We put smiles on the faces of over 2,500 children of employees through our #LittleStar awards.

The children received certificates in the post, signed by CEO Joe Garner, to thank them for being so well behaved and helping their parents to continue building society, nationwide, during lockdown.

This was a great way to recognise the unsung heroes of the pandemic – the little people who took school closure, home-schooling and everything else in their stride. This initiative was driven by our Working Families Network.

Family support leave

During the pandemic, it quickly became apparent that many carers needed additional support.

Initially the focus was on parents who were thrown into home schooling, but the Working Carers Network and the Working Families Network worked with our People & Culture colleagues to highlight the leave that is available to carers as well.

This led to increased messaging to clarify that Family Support Leave, which offers additional paid leave for employees, is also available to carers who need additional time to care for their loved ones.

Recognising our wellbeing achievements

We’ve been externally recognised for our commitment to colleague wellbeing.

Banking Standards Board

Nationwide had the highest proportion of employees who were proud of the way we supported health and wellbeing during the pandemic (Banking Standards Board, 2020).

Business in the Community

We were named as a Business in the Community Champion 2020 with special recognition within the Bupa Health and Wellbeing Award category, for embedding health and wellbeing into our culture.


We also received the Mind Workplace Wellbeing Silver Award for the second year running.