Assignment On Management Of Workforce Diversity Magazine

The workforce diversity has become an essential business concern. In the so-called information age, the greatest assets of most companies are now on two feet (or a set of wheels). Undeniably, there is a talent war raging. No company can afford to unnecessarily restrict its ability to attract and retain the very best employees available.

Generally speaking, the term “Workforce Diversity” refers to policies and practices that seek to include people within a workforce who are considered to be, in some way, different from those in the prevailing constituency.

 

Report Summary

Workforce diversity is a global phenomenon which ensures equal job opportunities and facilities for minor group irrespective of gender, age, ethnicity and skin color. Global banking giant Standard Chartered Bank also believes in workforce diversity to ensure success in diversified world market. To ensure workforce diversity the bank has initiated several steps like- equal payment and promotion for women, observing International Women Day highly, guesthouse for women, branch for women, arrange women council, set up women forum, encourage workforce balance and healthcare for disable employee.

In the report we are trying to assess their diversified workforce by describing- workforce diversity of Standard Chartered Bank, Steps to ensure workforce diversity, gender diversity, employee diversity, customer diversity, cultural diversity, health and safety diversity, advantages of workforce diversity in Standard Chartered Bank, how HRM affect workforce diversity in Standard Chartered Bank, emerging problem to diversity and at last a rich conclusion.

 

Introduction

‘Workforce Diversity’ is not a catchword-watchword; it’s a buzzword in the modern corporate world. The term workforce diversity demonstrates that the modern era of corporate world is not only vested on the male or only on the white but also it’s a place where male-female, white-black, native-ethnic and sound-disable have equal access. As a proud participant of modern corporate world, the world’s leading Banking Corporation “Standard Chartered Bank” has ensured its diversity in workforce. Starting its voyage as a banking corporation in 1853, at present Standard chartered has 73,800 employees representing 125 nationalities in over 70 territories by its outstanding 1400 branches. Here women employees make up 46% of total workforce and 20% female representation at senior management level. Not only Standard Chartered emphasizes on female employees but also on ethnic and disabled employees regardless of race, nationality and skin color.

 

Workforce Diversity

As we enter the 21st century, workforce diversity has become an essential business concern. In the so-called information age, the greatest assets of most companies are now on two feet (or a set of wheels). Undeniably, there is a talent war raging. No company can afford to unnecessarily restrict its ability to attract and retain the very best employees available.

Generally speaking, the term “Workforce Diversity” refers to policies and practices that seek to include people within a workforce who are considered to be, in some way, different from those in the prevailing constituency.

 

The workforce today

The workforce is changing. During the next 10 years, employees will be retiring in record numbers. The baby boomer generation compromises approximately 45% of the workforce. Many are in management positions and are preparing to retire. Added to this, a new generation has recently entered the workforce, with its own unique characteristics. By looking at the needs of the different generations in the workplace, Modern Corporation can develop strategies to better prepare their workforce. The following tips can aid in this process:

  • Develop mentoring programs.
  • Create flexible work schedules.
  • Use a strengths-based approach to promotions.
  • Focus on high potential employees.
  • Provide opportunities for ongoing education.
  • Design a program to preserve the knowledge of the key employees.

 

Diversity of Standard Chartered Bank:

Standard Chartered as a global bank has a large diverse workforce, whose are serving in the variety of markets. The bank focuses on three standards of diversity (Hutchful Florence, Area Head of Human Resources, SCB West Africa). These are:

  • Nationality or Ethnicity
  • Disability and
  • Gender

Nationality or Ethnicity

Diversity has given Standard Chartered Bank distinctive advantage over its competitors and improved its ability to attract talented people from very diverse backgrounds, thereby creating a more diverse and inclusive working environment. The bank is one of the top international banks with around 73,800 employees across 70 countries and territories. Applicants know that they have equal opportunities in the bank regardless of their nationality and employees also feel their differences are respected and valued, not just tolerated.

 

 

The table demonstrates a statistics of diversified employees and nationalities:

Diversity200620072008
Percentage of female representation globally47%46%46%
Percentage of female senior managers16%15%17%
Number of nationalities represented globally105115125
Number of nationalities represented at senior management566168

(Source:www.standardchartered.com/sustainability/great-place-to-work/data-targets/en/index.html)

Gender Diversity

Gender equality helps strengthen communities and further economic development. Women make up 46% of its total workforce and the number of women in senior management roles has increased. To increase female representation amongst senior management the bank focuses on creating a pipeline of high-potential female employees at middle management. In 2008, the bank developed a mentoring program for their middle management talent, with a specific focus on women.

 

Employees with disabilities

In 2008 Standard Chartered Bank put a renewed focus on attracting and supporting prospective employees with disabilities. Over the last 12 months, the Group trained and hired a number of blind employees in Pakistan, employed its first visually challenged employees in Indonesia. In India, the bank partnered with a non-government organization (NGO) to improve job prospects for people with disabilities. In China, the bank has also increased its focus on recruiting individuals with disabilities.

The table represents the group employees’ statistics of Standard Chartered Bank:

Group Employees Statistics

 20062005
Total Headcount42 26540867
Per business segment   
Personal & Business Banking29 68828  867
-South Africa24 95424 436
– Rest of Africa47344431
Corporate & Investment Banking71606429
– South Africa35493247
-Rest of Africa18061688
-Outside Africa18051494
Central and other855835
Investment Management & Life Insurance 45624736
Women (%)  
Female employees5965
Female managers4241
Female executives1614
Age profile (%)  
< 261614
26-354140
36-452726
46-551313
> 5533
Unclassified04
Length of Service (%)  
<33429
3-5 Years1819
6-10 years1819
> 10 Years3030
Unclassified03
Disabled employees (%)0.50.5
Highest qualification (%)  
Certificates & diplomas (undergraduates)5957
First degree98
Honours and post graduate certificates and diplomas22
Masters and doctorates11
Unclassified2932
Employee wellbeing (%)  
Absenteeism rate 1.91.7

(Source: www.standardbank.co.za/…/i/employees)

 

 

Why gender diversity is important to Standard Chartered Bank?

Standard Chartered Bank’s main footprint is in Asia, the Middle East and Africa, and in most of these regions women have not been able to get to a position where their full potential can be realized. Obviously that has an impact on the entire society and social environment. One of its roles as a responsible player in these markets is to create that development within the wider communities in which they operate. And the bank thinks that getting gender diversity right in those markets is economically quite powerful.

Diversity issues in the workplace regarding Standard Chartered Bank

Employees in a diverse workplace co-operate others who are not the same. When diversity is present in the workplace, issues arise are:

Equal pay: Men and Women having the same educations and job skills are paid equally in Standard Chartered Bank.

Affirmative action: The bank does not recruit from protected groups or promote based on sole criterion but based on analyzing demographics and qualifications.

Sexual harassment: The bank is an equal opportunity employer and has initiatives in reducing sexual harassment.

Religious and political beliefs: Employees of the bank have different religious and political beliefs but can’t enforce onto others.

Negative attitudes: The bank treats all employees positively regardless of age, sex, and race.

Initiatives for ensuring workforce diversity

Standard Chartered Bank is committed to creating an engaging, inclusive work environment – a place where people can make a difference both as individuals and as part of a team. “Standard Chartered Bank wants to be an exemplar employer of Diversity across our markets in all over the world” (Bindra, Jaspal, Chairman, Group Diversity & Inclusion council, Standard Chartered Bank).

For ensuring workforce diversity they have taken some initiatives, these are as follows:

Day care centers: They have launched their first day care center in October 2007 in Mumbai named “Colours of Joy”.

Flexi Hours: Their initial focus will be on two flexible working arrangements- flexi time and part-time working, for ensuring employees balancing with their work and personal commitments.

Differently Abled Hiring: To make the working environment ‘inclusive’ for all – creating feasible workplace solutions and barrier free environment, early this year, the bank launched a differently abled hiring drive.

Women Guest Houses: Keeping in mind the needs and challenges of the women staffs, a Woman’s Guest House was started in May, 2008 in Mumbai.

All Women’s Branch: In May 2007, they have launched the first all-women’s branch in Kolkata aimed at providing greater financial independence to its women customers.

Some other initiatives at Standard Chartered Bank:

  • Formed a women’s council.
  • Set up the women’s Forum in May 2007.
  • Arranging International Career Development program.
  • Encouraging work-life balance.

Standard Chartered Bank believes in embracing the different interests, needs and strengths of their people and enabling them to fulfill their potential.

 

How workforce diversity of Standard Chartered Bank affect HRM?

Organizations that celebrate workforce diversity are getting higher profit. That’s why the bank maintains workforce diversity. In order to ensure diversity in workplace, the HRM department of the bank tends to hire, promote, retain, provide diversity training for employees and encourages diversity. The HRM department ensures flexible working place and leadership training for potential female members. Culturally some women are not comfortable in speaking to male tellers. That’s why the HRM department of the bank has arranged various types of seminars such as Training Women Strategy. This arrangement helps to increase their comfort levels. To increase diversity in a generally male dominated industry, the HRM department developed several initiatives for women in its workplace. For example: netball training and informal education on critical life skills, financial literacy, health and hygiene and communication. Standard Chartered Bank recognizes and deals with different values, needs, interests and expectations of employees. With the help of HRM department, employees must avoid any practice that can be interpreted as being sexist, racist or offensive any particular group. The above all scenarios demonstrate that to assist diverse people, the HRM of the bank has taken steps regarding to diversity.

Conclusion

‘Workforce Diversity’- the demand of modern corporate world is inevitable for the multinational banking corporation like Standard Chartered to hold its worldwide diversified markets and customers. The report demonstrates the initiatives taken by the bank to make a worldwide diversified workplace. Ensuring workforce diversity is not only means the entry of women, disable and ethnic people but also ensuring the equal payment, prohibiting sexual harassment, evaluating religious and political beliefs and other facilities which Standard Chartered Bank greatly treats. Above all assessment, the report shows that Standard Chartered, the world’s banking giant has ensured workforce diversity for its employees including women, ethnic people and disable regardless of race, nationality and skin color.

Diversity in the Workplace: Benefits, Challenges, and the Required Managerial Tools1

Kelli Green, Mayra López, Allen Wysocki, Karl Kepner, Derek Farnsworth, and Jennifer L. Clark2

Introduction

The world's increasing globalization requires more interaction among people from diverse backgrounds. People no longer live and work in an insular environment; they are now part of a worldwide economy competing within a global framework. For this reason, profit and non-profit organizations need to become more diversified to remain competitive. Maximizing and capitalizing on workplace diversity is an important issue for management.

Supervisors and managers need to recognize the ways in which the workplace is changing and evolving. Managing diversity is a significant organizational challenge, so managerial skills must adapt to accommodate a multicultural work environment.

This document is designed to help managers effectively manage diverse workforces. It provides a general definition for workplace diversity, discusses the benefits and challenges of managing diverse workplaces, and presents effective strategies for managing diverse workforces.

Figure 1. 
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Diversity Defined

Diversity can be defined as acknowledging, understanding, accepting, and valuing differences among people with respect to age, class, race, ethnicity, gender, disabilities, etc. (Esty et al. 1995).

Companies need to embrace diversity and look for ways to become inclusive organizations because diversity has the potential to yield greater work productivity and competitive advantages (SHRM 1995). Stephen Butler, co-chair of the Business-Higher Education Forum, believes diversity is an invaluable competitive asset (Robinson 2002). Managing diversity is a key component of effective people management in the workplace (Black Enterprise 2001).

Demographic changes (women in the workplace, organizational restructuring, and equal opportunity legislation) will require organizations to review their management practices and develop new and creative approaches to managing people. Positive changes will increase work performance and customer service.

The number of dual-income families and single working mothers has changed the dynamics of the workplace. Changes in the family structure means that there are fewer traditional family roles (Zweigenhaft and Domhoff 1998).

Significant changes in the workplace have occurred due to downsizing and outsourcing, which has greatly affected human resource management. Globalization and new technologies have changed workplace practices, and there has been a trend toward longer working hours (Losyk 1996). Generally speaking, organizational restructuring usually results in fewer people doing more work.

Changes in federal and state equal opportunity legislations have made discrimination in the workplace illegal. These laws specify the rights and responsibilities of both associates (employees) and employers in the workplace and hold both groups accountable.

Benefits of Diversity in the Workplace

Diversity is beneficial to both associates and employers. Although associates are interdependent in the workplace, respecting individual differences can increase productivity. Diversity in the workplace can reduce lawsuits and increase marketing opportunities, recruitment, creativity, and business image (Esty et al. 1995). In an era when flexibility and creativity are keys to competitiveness, diversity is critical for an organization’s success. Also, the consequences (loss of time and money) should not be overlooked.

Challenges of Diversity in the Workplace

There are challenges to managing a diverse work population. Managing diversity is more than simply acknowledging differences in people. It involves recognizing the value of differences, combating discrimination, and promoting inclusiveness. Managers may also be challenged with losses in personnel and work productivity due to prejudice and discrimination, as well as complaints and legal actions against the organization (Devoe 1999).

Negative attitudes and behaviors can be barriers to organizational diversity because they can harm working relationships and damage morale and work productivity (Esty et al. 1995). Negative attitudes and behaviors in the workplace include prejudice, stereotyping, and discrimination, which should never be used by management for hiring, retention, and termination practices (could lead to costly litigation).

Required Tools for Managing Diversity

Effective managers are aware that certain skills are necessary for creating a successful, diverse workforce. First, managers must understand discrimination and its consequences. Second, managers must recognize their own cultural biases and prejudices (Koonce 2001). Diversity is not about differences among groups, but rather about differences among individuals. Each individual is unique and does not represent or speak for a particular group. Finally, managers must be willing to change the organization if necessary (Koonce 2001). Organizations need to learn how to manage diversity in the workplace to be successful in the future (Flagg 2002).

Unfortunately, there is no single recipe for success. It mainly depends on the manager’s ability to understand what is best for the organization based on teamwork and the dynamics of the workplace. According to Roosevelt (2001), managing diversity is a comprehensive process for creating a work environment that includes everyone. When creating a successful diverse workforce, an effective manager should focus on personal awareness. Both managers and associates need to be aware of their personal biases. Therefore, organizations need to develop, implement, and maintain ongoing training because a one-day session of training will not change people’s behaviors (Koonce 2001). Managers must also understand that fairness is not necessarily equality. There are always exceptions to the rule.

Managing diversity is about more than equal employment opportunity and affirmative action (Losyk 1996). Managers should expect change to be slow, while at the same time encouraging change (Koonce 2001).

Another vital requirement when dealing with diversity is promoting a safe place for associates to communicate (Koonce 2001). Social gatherings and business meetings, where every member must listen and have the chance to speak, are good ways to create dialogues. Managers should implement policies such as mentoring programs to provide associates access to information and opportunities. Also, associates should never be denied necessary, constructive, critical feedback for learning about mistakes and successes (Flagg 2002).

Conclusions

A diverse workforce is a reflection of a changing world and marketplace. Diverse work teams bring high value to organizations. Respecting individual differences will benefit the workplace by creating a competitive edge and increasing work productivity. Diversity management benefits associates by creating a fair and safe environment where everyone has access to opportunities and challenges. Management tools in a diverse workforce should be used to educate everyone about diversity and its issues, including laws and regulations. Most workplaces are made up of diverse cultures, so organizations need to learn how to adapt to be successful.

References

Black Enterprise. 2001. "Managing a multicultural workforce." Black Enterprise Magazine (July).

Devoe, D. 1999. Managing a diverse workforce. San Mateo, CA: InfoWorld Media Group.

Esty, K., R. Griffin, and M. Schorr-Hirsh. 1995. Workplace diversity. A manager's guide to solving problems and turning diversity into a competitive advantage. Avon, MA: Adams Media Corporation.

Flagg, A. 2002. "Managing diverse workgroups successfully." United Behavioral Health.

Koonce, R. 2001. "Redefining diversity: It's not just the right thing to do; it also makes good business sense." Training and Development (December).

Loysk, B. 1996. Managing a changing workforce: Achieving outstanding service with today's employees. Davie, FL: Workplace Trends Publishing.

Robinson, K-S. 2002. "U.S. must focus on diversity or face decline in competitiveness." The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).

Roosevelt, T.R. Jr. 2001. "Elements of a successful diversity process." The American Institute for Managing Diversity.

Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). 1998. "SHRM survey explores the best in diversity practices. Fortune 500 firms outpace the competition with greater commitment to diversity." The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). http://www.shrm.org/

Zweigenhaft, R.L., and G.W. Domhoff. 1998. Diversity in the power elite: Have women and minorities reached the top? New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.



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