Our mission is to enable the world to create better products and services through deep customer understanding. We believe that as organizations grow, a ‘customer understanding gap’ develops between those who are exposed to customers regularly (like user researchers, product managers, designers, sales folks, support people, and more) and those who are not. We want to close this gap so that everybody in an organization has customer knowledge available at their fingertips. We believe this will enable faster, better decisions and empathy with customers, ultimately resulting in better products and services for the world. Headquartered in Sydney, Australia, Dovetail was founded in 2017 by two ex-Atlassians, Benjamin Humphrey and Bradley Ayers. Since then, Dovetail has grown to 1,500+ paying customers and 25,000+ users, from small design agencies to universities to Fortune 100 companies. Customers include Square, Shopify, Figma, BCG, Porsche, Canva, and Glossier, and more.
As a tech startup headquartered in Sydney, Australia, Dovetail’s founders hired initial team members from their local network but came to realise they had unintentionally created an all-male engineering team. Although they were still a very small team, with only seven in engineering, they wanted to proactively address this imbalance early, so they signed up to the Project F Startup Program.
First up, Dovetail completed Project F’s online Gender Balance Health Check. This gave them a clear view of the areas of change required.
They then applied to join the Project F Startup Program, which required the completion of a pay scale for tech roles and levels using a template and relevant market data provided by Project F.
Once Dovetail’s application was complete, Project F sent them the full Startup Toolkit which they got to work on straight away.
The software engineering team has moved from 0–20% women
Product & Design teams are 75% women
Clearly defined role levels are now in place for engineering
Interview processes have been improved to remove bias
Implementing 12 weeks equal paid parental leave
This is just the beginning of Dovetail’s diversity and inclusion journey. As they continue to use the Project F Startup Program startup toolkit and accreditation mark, they will see more women applying to join them, and over time, their teams will reach balanced levels, leading to meaningful business benefits.
According to our research, these benefits include better problem solving, willingness to experiment, and heightened creativity. When you’re building technology products, these are high-impact skills and characteristics.