Diversity and Inclusion Survey 2019/20

Diversity and Inclusion Survey 2019/20

7 February 2020 by John Brehcist

One of our key priorities in WOA is to look into the future of the Open Account Receivables Finance world and to encourage discussion and debate about what this might look like.

It’s our view that the Industry will need to make itself more attractive to a wider set of users with a broader range of demographics. And that’s why the issues of Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) are a central aspect of our thinking.

This is why we created a Learning Lab on this area and one of the first actions is to launch a survey on how our stakeholders see this important subject. This survey ran during December 2019 and January 2020 and we thank all those companies who took the time and trouble to participate.

The attached Power Point presentation details the insights.

The survey respondents gave a good balance between small, medium and large enterprises (using the EU employee-number based definitions), so the feedback was evenly spread across the whole spectrum of employers.

For the overwhelming majority of respondents, D&I are clearly stated to be an important issue, with nearly three quarters of respondents believing that their business shows a strong commitment to addressing these areas.

The purposes of D&I activity are wide ranging – with a particular focus on attracting and retaining people and improving overall business performance. The pursuit of D&I objectives is very much aligned with creating a smarter, higher performing business.

Because most respondents recognise its importance, they believe support is necessary, with management and staff receiving help and advice with areas like avoiding discrimination, dealing with unconscious bias, embracing the benefits of diversity and encouraging inclusion.

But at the same time, whilst there was general recognition of the importance, the application of D&I principles may have room to develop, as only 40% of respondents felt they had an environment that fully addresses the issues and opportunities.

And this need to develop translates across into a broad spectrum of HR processes, from recruitment to personal development, to board and senior management representation.

It’s also clear that good intentions always need translating into actions on the ground; the responses show that communication within businesses about these issues is not always effective. And that means there is the potential to “talk the talk” but not “walk the talk”. So it's clear that for many, this is a work in progress, and WOA's Learning Lab is here to support.

We welcome comment and reaction to the survey!

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