Based on 14 in-depth interviews, this paper explores the unique workplace experiences of transgender individuals in the UK employment context. The paper identifies gender identity diversity as a key blind spot in HRM and diversity management research and practice. The findings reveal the range of workplace challenges experienced by transgender employees. Major findings are that discriminatory effects are often occupation- and industry-specific; transition is a period where many transgender workers suffer due to lack of proper organisational support; and expertise deficits exist in supporting and accommodating transgender employees’ needs. In unpacking these experiences, the paper demonstrates the distinctive dimensions of challenges faced by transgender employees, revealing the need for conceptually expanding how we frame diversity and diversity management. Our findings identify the necessity for an emic approach not only to researching diversity but also to devising organisational diversity strategies. The paper provides recommendations for HRM policy and practice in order to develop a more sophisticated approach to achieving inclusion.
By Mustafa Bilgehan Ozturk and Ahu Tatli, 2016