D&I is about creating a workplace culture that helps every employee to contribute to their full potential. It is more than just policies, initiatives and processes: it is about how we work with each other every day.
Our commitment to D&I has provided us with a diverse workforce and a business and working environment that strongly cultivates creativity and innovation.
To continue to build upon this strength, we have a number of pioneering initiatives, such as our global mentoring and Women in Leadership programmes. Both of these also demonstrate our focus on the promotion of gender diversity:
Our inclusive working environment allows us to benefit from the diversity of our people, their strengths and differing perspectives. To ensure that all employees feel appreciated for who they are and what they bring to the organisation, we took a number of actions in 2010, including:
Together, these initiatives resulted in a significant increase in the inclusiveness score in our employee engagement survey, to 4.28 from 4.13 in 2010.
We remain firm in our commitment to create a more inclusive working environment for our employees. This extends to one of the world’s largest minority groups – people with disabilities – who make up 10 per cent of the world’s population, or approximately 650 million people.
In recent years, we have included increasing numbers of employees with disabilities in our organisation, particularly employees with visual impairments. In our Consumer Banking business, we hired 60 visually impaired employees into our New Business Telesales teams across eight markets.
To deepen our understanding and assess the inclusiveness of our current approach to hiring and retaining employees with disabilities, we conducted a series of focus groups in Pakistan and Malaysia, where visually impaired telesales teams have been in place for longer than in other markets.
Feedback was sought from employees with visual impairments, their co-workers and team managers on issues such as manager support, learning and development and accessibility. This feedback will be used to ensure that we continue to be a great place to work for all employees.
One of our visually impaired employees said: “The thing I like most about my job is that customers don’t know that I can’t see. This allows me to get my job done without any sympathy or favours from anyone. I have never let my visual impairment stand in my way, but focused on further improving my strengths. I am proud to be part of the Standard Chartered family.”