This article is brought to you by Schneider Electric.
The past year and a half can be summed up in one word – uncertainty; making it more important than ever for companies to lead through empathy, and demonstrate inclusive leadership.
Schneider Electric, which was recently crowned the gold winner for Excellence in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at the 2021 Hong Kong HR Distinction Awards, believes D&I drives high performance.
Diversity is Schneider’s foundation – it brings new business value for the company, customers and communities, and generates more innovation and engagement.
In an increasingly complex business environment, finding a way to blend diversity in thought and ideas not only makes an organisation more human, more competitive, and more fun, it might be the only way to achieve sustainability.
Creating an inclusive workforce started with transitioning from its headquarters to a multi-hub business model to create a true global leadership structure at Schneider Electric.
Its global family leave policy recognises that the definition of family, life, and work is changing every day. It offers primary and secondary parental leave for both natural birth and adoption, care leave, bereavement leave, birthday leave, and even volunteer leave.
A global pay equity framework has been implemented in all countries, covering 99.6% of Schneider’s total workforce. The framework includes four main areas (methodology and analysis, HR processes, governance and audit, education and communication) to address the challenges in establishing a global process across different geographies, statutory approaches, and close pay gaps across genders.
It’s not just about pay though – Schneider’s women leaders’ programme creates a customised leadership training programme to elevate them to leadership roles. Its ‘Women Mentoring Circle’ provides young female talent with direct mentorship opportunities from senior female leaders.
Its Hong Kong office, as a global hub, includes 500 employees from more than 20 nationalities, and during Pride month, activities include inviting employees from the LGBT+ community to share their experiences, so as to raise awareness on hidden biases, and build a workplace free from stereotypes.
Schneider’s wellbeing initiatives and policies are aimed at helping its people reinforce their agility to better cope with permanent changes. This is done by promoting practices that enable a more productive and flexible work environment, and leveraging technology to become more of a global team.
A smart working culture fosters a better work-life integration, and drives wellbeing, allowing employees to effectively manage their work, life, and family needs.
Schneider’s flexi-working policies include a hybrid working option – two days a week, and flexible working hours where outcomes replace hours worked. Truly, a workplace strategy that provides people with a combination of hot desks and office space depending on the type of work they need to perform, and a flexible dress code to promote an inclusive culture, aligned with the local culture.
Achieving this global inclusive workforce is done through driving digital and automated solutions to improve the employee experience and engagement.
To support employees’ career development, Schneider launched its open talent market where an artificial intelligence-based platform matches employees with personalised opportunities within the company across the globe. While its global recognition portal creates a ‘constant culture of recognition’.
Finally, Schneider’s ‘#LearnEveryDay’ motto is how it truly empowers its global workforce. Schneider believes in lifelong learning and through its digital learning platform – ‘My Learning Link’ – helps its people learn and grow on the go.
Schneider understands its success is very much reliant on the happiness and satisfaction of its employees, hence, it goes the extra mile to support them – both in and out of the office.
Photo / HRO HR Distinction Awards 2021