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Reverse trend: Clients are demanding workforce diversity

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Rupal Sinha, Global President, BVG India Limited

Rupal Sinha, Global President, BVG India Limited says that women are already well represented in some but not all departments; this representation will soon be across the board.

Favoured clients

The aviation, healthcare and hospitality sectors are seeing a higher deployment ratio of the female workforce, especially as janitorial staff, patient care attendants, supervisors, operations managers, trainers, reception duties and command control executives, to name a few roles .

There is a perception built that women in the service industry contribute better in client relation management, service excellence, risk management and in various soft services due to their empathetic, multi-tasking behaviour.

Reverse trend

We are seeing a reverse trend where clients are demanding women diversity in the deployed workforce with a strong emphasis on LGBTQ and especially-abled people. This trend is helping us achieve our diversity goals as well.

Current status

Our approach has been to create a diverse and inclusive environment with an equitable approach in our management team. Presently, our HR, Accounts, Sales and Marketing departments have a higher density of female representation.

Inhibitors

Women start at 43% of tertiary-level graduates. Yet, they constitute only 28% of entry-level professionals; only 14-16% reach middle management level and just 4.6% make it to senior leadership roles. Unequal pay, gender inequality, lack of work-life balance and organisational culture are common causes of attrition.

Policy decisions

Our focus has been to create an inclusive environment that addresses diversity with equity. The focus is on mentoring and conducting sessions to reduce unconscious biases. Our efforts have been to make hiring gender neutral and ensure equal compensation for equal work and experience.

We have strong policies built for our blue- and white-collared employees on discrimination, harassment, violence and aggressive behaviour at work, which are diligently addressed through the POSH and internal vigilance teams.

Practical plans

Deployment of women in night shifts is meticulously planned and is usually more in a closed environment such as hospitals. We also safeguard their transit to and from the workplace.

We have an Employee Associate Engagement team that visits sites for conducting awareness programs on government and company policies and benefits, women safety, addressing work related issues, career enhancement, motivation, mentoring and celebrating with reward and recognition.

Our training department is mandated to conduct training courses on women safety, and basic martial arts to respond to any threat or safety issues.

Our current diversity ratio is that women constitute 28% of our core strength. Our target is for this to reach 35% in the next two years.

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