Anti-Harassment Program

Harassment at work is a problem, which is currently central in Ukraine and in the whole world. Inappropriate jokes, verbal abuses, bullying, humiliating and intimidating nonverbal actions, sexual abuses are different forms of harassment manifestation against both – women and men. According to Deloitte for Australian Human Rights Commission data, business’ financial expenses for solving problems, connected to harassment (mobbing, bullying, bossing, improper conduct), total 0,9 billion USD. In the same research the scientists calculated, that money equivalent of teams’ productivity loss as a result of such situations for one country exceeds 2,6 billion USD per year. So, the harassment problem mostly affects human resource, which is business’ major asset and, consequently, negatively affects company’s financial performance.

During the last few years this subject in our country is mostly discussed in professional environment and among employers, but not at public scale. Because of shame, fear of being misunderstood and disapproval from the others, the team members don’t spread the word about harassment incidents they face in day-to-day work. As often as not, between solving the problem and firing, they choose the latter. According to open sources, 17% of team members, who were harassed, resign voluntarily. In these cases, the law won’t do much. In labor code of Ukraine there’s no such notion as “harassment”. Consequently, the companies where human resource is the biggest asset should solve the problem by themselves. 

IT is one of the most highly competitive industries. In order to gather the best specialists in our team, we need to propose the best conditions. And don’t let the communication quality between the team members suffer because of ignorance as to questions of behavior with the colleagues of different nationalities, cultures, genders etc. 

In order to accomplish this mission, we worked out a program system of counteraction against unethical acts and prejudice. Because we think that the ability to talk about tough questions and the acceptance of diversity directly affect the emotional atmosphere and, consequently, team’s productivity. Especially in global market company, working with specialists from the whole world, which cares about variety, inclusion and cross-cultural efficiency.



Implementation phases

Phase one: preparation.

а) assembling project team with insightful expertise in question of harassment;

б) examined leading Ukrainian practices and legislation analysis, concerning prevention and regulation the cases of harassment, prepared by EY consulting company;

в) conducted subject research and intensive audit of situation in the company;

г) on the grounds of these materials Anti-Harassment corporate policy was developed, along with the algorithms, mechanics and procedure for settlement of related questions.

Phase two: work with team leaders and team managers.

We’ve collaborated with SHRM Association (Society for Human Resource Management) for examining the international practices:

а) we’ve adapted the SHRM Association educational program concerning prevention of harassment at work;

б) we’ve distributed the program in online environments among team leaders and team managers, for which the participation became obligatory. Because we constantly upgrade leadership skills among managers, including practice of cross-cultural communication and ethical reciprocity.

Phase three: teaching.

а) we’ve developed corporate training for all team members, after receiving positive responses and desire to spread the information among all coworkers, from already involved team leaders and team managers;

б) we’ve assembled teams for deeper involvement of all specialists in the training (Training for Trainers – 16 persons);

в) inner ambassadors, who galvanized the dialogue in the group, have distinguished themselves seamlessly in every team;

г) because of pandemia we’ve responsively moved this program online.

Phase four: individual education.

а) we’ve developed and created 5 videos sequence, which became not only the best conclusive format of communication, but also the internal anti-harassment problem database. The videos are dedicated to 5 topics: Harassment, Bullying, Gender Harassment, Sexual Harassment, Digital Harassment Prevention. Over 1200 persons have completed their training through these videos.

б) we’ve integrated videos to onboarding-systems in order to teach new neophyte specialists. They watch the videos on their first day of work in the company.

в) for all team members we’ve provided permanent access to videos through corporate LMS platform LEARN. In fact these videos became our internal anti-harassment problem database.

Phase five: popularization.

a) we’ve developed internal communications campaign, in order to heighten team’s interest in new Anti-Harassment politics: teasers and catchy slogans to draw the attention, thematic swag – #NO MEANS NO, #HarassmentFreeZone, #HARASSMENT IS NEVER OK. Line directors were also engaged here, who as ambassadors of this program were popularizing it.

б) team managers were engaged to popularize the inventions.

Budget – 20 500 USD


2019 – subject examination and policy development, HR, team leaders and team managers training

2020 – all specialists training, start of internal communications campaign, creation of thematic videos and their integration to onboarding-systems for teaching purposes

2021 – actualization of Digital Harassment Prevention, all neophytes have watched program materials and videos



The results and statistics of project efficiency:

● preventing prejudice manifestations and development of diversity acceptance culture

– when the project was completed 398 out of 1200 team members pointed out, that they feel more safe at work. And 80 out of 195 team managers said, that they feel more confident with their subordinates and in collaboration with other teams;

● 14 % increase of team’s work efficiency measures: the amount of people with highest rating of productivity and involvement drastically increased (category Rock Star – All In for Performance Review) has increased from 19% to 33%;

● preventing of team member turnover: company retention rate over year has increased by 14% – from 75% to 89%;

● strengthening of company’s brand – we received 182 positive reviews on our program

in Satisfaction Survey – poll about company’s contentment level;

● all neophytes are familiarized with Anti-Harassment policy and completed the training by videos.

Influence on business and return on investment:

We prevented resources expense on conflict situations solving with harassment manifestations: financial, time, psychoemotional. As we prevented hushing up the problems and actions, which could potentially evoke them, also we scaped the cases of team members’ firing with reference to the topic. Feeling of safety during team work enhanced sociability in communication between specialists of different levels, and also broadened practice of personal cases solving by using internal chats, which well affected the productivity and work efficiency.


As a result – Anti-Harassment policy has escalated company’s attraction on the market for future team members and business environment.

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