Atlassian is bucking the tech trend of branded T-shirts, caps and hoodies by adding more variety to its wardrobe of swag to ensure everyone has feels comfortable.
After creating thousands of branded t-shirts each year — and going by the internal adage that it’s “a t-shirt company masquerading as a software company” — the company has expanded its offering to include a number of dress styles.
The design by a small team of staff was the winning idea produced at the company’s quarterly 24-hour hackathon, known as ShipIt.
Kayla Cannon, who led the project, said the idea came from listening to female colleagues discussing ways to make their T-shirts more feminine.
“On the off chance that someone else might be feeling the same way as me, I mentioned in one of my conversations that it would be cool if we had dresses to wear as an alternative option. Everyone seemed to like the idea and that got me thinking, why not!?”
Aubrey Blanche, head of diversity and inclusion at Atlassian, has previously spoken to Business Insider about why wearing traditional “swag” at tech conferences isn’t always a good thing.
She explained that sometimes these events create the perception that people must wear T-shirts and hoodies, forcing them to abandon their own style and preferences. That, in turn, creates exclusion — a big no-no in terms of the company’s guiding values of inclusion and equality.
“At Atlassian it’s really important that we embrace and continue our long-stay rituals and traditions with the goal of stitching inclusion into their fabric,” she said.
“We have almost 2,000 Atlassians globally, some of them wear swag, and some of them don’t. And that’s absolutely OK. But it’s important we offer choice so that those who do want to wear it, feel included.”
The dresses are made from the offcuts from the existing product lines, meaning they are also ethical and sustainable.
While the new range is only available to staff currently, and down the track Atlassian is looking into making them available to customers.