Press Release

April 30, 2015

Diversity and inclusion programs improve productivity, engagement and loyalty


Organisational diversity and inclusion (D&I) programs enhance loyalty and advocacy towards an employer (81%), increase employees’ commitment to their jobs (70%) and increase overall productivity (61%) amongst infrastructure sector workers, a new survey from integrated infrastructure firm AECOM and recruiter Robert Walters has found.

The survey reveals that while D&I has a positive impact on  organisations’ ability to attract and retain both male and female talent, more than a third (35%) of employers do not actively promote D&I when advertising a role.

The majority (84%) of candidate respondents think organisational commitment to diversity and inclusion programs is important when they are looking for a new role.

Lara Poloni, AECOM Chief Executive – Australia New Zealand, speaking at the first event in AECOM’s Leaders In InfrastructureDiversity & Inclusion series held in Brisbane, said organisational commitment to diversity and inclusion is a win/win for organisations operating in the infrastructure sector.

“With the right leadership, policies and culture, it improves the productivity and engagement of existing employees and helps attract new ones,” she said.

“However, diversity and inclusion alone is not enough; it needs to be part of a holistic talent management strategy to deliver maximum benefit.”

“As an integrated infrastructure business, AECOM is committed to diversity and inclusion. We are currently undertaking a gender pay gap analysis to identify pay inequality and understand how to minimise it across nearly 3,000 employees. We have also developed a mentoring network for future female leaders to drive engagement and act as a sounding board for diversity and inclusion initiatives.”

With the support of Robert Walters, the Leaders In Infrastructure series brought together Diversity & Inclusion executive sponsors and influencers from companies including Telstra, Laing O’Rourke, Aurizon, Queensland Urban Utilities, Energex and the Queensland Department of Transport & Main Roads. Together they are committed to addressing the structural, cultural, personal and interpersonal barriers hampering business efforts to promote gender diversity and inclusion.

According to employees who completed the survey, the top three drivers for D&I in an organisation are company culture (61%), equal promotion opportunities (59%) and flexible work arrangements (44%).

Sinead Hourigan, Director, Robert Walters Brisbane, said: “When employees are making decisions about who to work for in the infrastructure space, diversity and inclusion has become a key point of differentiation. It is of particular interest to note that both male and female participants are very much aligned in their thoughts about diversity and inclusion with very little difference in response across the genders. Fundamentally, the survey found that many organisations are missing out on an opportunity to attract prospective employees by omitting their commitment to diversity and inclusion from job advertisements.”

“The other area of concern unearthed by the survey was that more than half (54%) of employers do not know if diversity and inclusion has been a contr…