We communicate to customers in the second person (you), and when we refer to other people, we use third person and keep our language gender neutral, including pronouns. Don’t assume that the accountant, tax expert, or other financial professional is a he.
If you find yourself in the awkward spot where the subject’s gender is unknown, write your way around it. Don’t use she/he, s/he, they or them, or one. If you absolutely can’t write your way around it, then it’s OK to use they, them, or their.
When we write about a person, use the pronouns they go by. When in doubt, use the person’s name.
In some instances, we ask users to select a gender for themselves or an employee. Unless a specific state or federal regulation requires a binary choice, present these three options:
Don’t use “Other” as an option by itself. You’re other-ing an entire group of people.
To comply with tax regulations, in TurboTax we ask for a dependent’s gender. We don’t ask for the gender of the taxpayer or their spouse.
Inclusive gender-neutral alternatives
Avoid unnecessarily gendered language. There are other ways to be gender neutral and inclusive:
- distinguished guests
- developers (more specific)
- ladies and gentlemen
- boys and girls
- brothers and sisters
These neutral choices might not be possible in other languages, but try to be as inclusive as possible when you can.
- If you add users, their dashboard looks different from yours.
- Add an accountant so you can work together in QuickBooks.
- Give developers their own web space for uploads.
- Managed users get their own user ID and password.
- If you add a user, his or her dashboard will look different from yours.
- Add an accountant so she/he can work with you in QuickBooks.
- Add an accountant so they can work with you in QuickBooks.
- Give each developer his own web space for uploads.
- One has one’s own web spaces for uploads.
- Each managed user gets his/her own user ID and password.
- Each managed user gets their own user ID and password.
Gender neutrality and inclusivity in other languages
French, Portuguese, Spanish, and the other Romance languages are gender-oriented. This means that there are (almost) no neutral alternatives for nouns and pronouns.
To write in a more inclusive and gender-neutral way, follow the Intuit guidelines and try to write around gender whenever possible.
A few examples in Portuguese
Welcome will be translated into “Bem-vindo”, which is the masculine form. There’s no neutral way to say “welcome” in Portuguese. Try to write something like “It’s good to have you here” or “We’re glad you’re here.” It’s longer but is a nice way to be gender-neutral and inclusive at the same time.
When possible, omit gender-specific pronouns.
Replace third person (she/he) with second person pronoun (you).
Replace adjectives for neutral alternatives, such as indefinite adjectives, substantives, or objects.