Elevate: The Inclusive Workplace Pledge was formally launched in 2021 by Business in the Community Ireland to support businesses to build more inclusive workplaces. The ultimate ambition of this initiative is for a workforce that is representative of all members of Irish society.
Veolia is actively involved in the Leaders Sub Group on Social Inclusion which created and launched the Elevate Pledge where Sinead Patton has been co-chair since 2018. Signing the Pledge last year, along with 51 other companies, is strongly aligned with our own Diversity and Inclusion Strategy.
The inaugural Annual Report offers a baseline on where signatories are as a collective in measuring diversity in the workforce and shares some of the successful actions in driving this agenda forward. Spearheaded by Business in the Community Ireland, the study involved 50 leading companies employing almost 120,000 people. The companies last year agreed to begin the task of measuring and disclosing on inclusivity and diversity in their workforce, across gender, age, disability, ethnicity and sexual orientation.
Recording of the launch
Key findings of the report include:
- The impact of gender specific initiatives is now being experienced at Executive level and there is also a strong pipeline of talent at Senior Manager level
- Businesses need to develop age friendly workplaces which will provide a multi-generational workforce
Sinéad Patton, Subgroup Co-chair and Chief Financial and Commercial Officer and Northern Ireland Regional Director at Veolia, commented: “The report is a key first step in building a data profile to understand the true nature of diversity in Irish workplaces. It is important to be able to know where we are at, to understand the barriers to inclusion, so that we can set about removing them. This can be achieved through cross-sector and cross-community collaboration and conversation, as facilitated through the Elevate Pledge. This is not just important for business but for society as a whole.”
The report also includes insights from Signatories on the activities that are driving progress. These include:
- Start with Strategy
- Be Pro-Active on Culture
- Engage ALL Colleagues
- Build Capacity and Confidence on D&I
- Implement Inclusive Hiring Practices
Tomás Sercovich, CEO, Business in the Community Ireland, said: “We no longer need to explain why diversity is good for business. The challenge ahead is how to ensure and sustain true inclusion across society, starting with our workplaces. Diversity cannot be taken for granted. This is as much about building a better society as it is about making our businesses more competitive for the future ahead.”