` How employee benefits can help diversify your executive and senior leadership team | Reward and Employee Benefits Association (REBA)
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25 Mar 2022
by Bal Gill

How employee benefits can help diversify your executive and senior leadership team

To attract top talent, progressive employers are prioritising employees’ life ambitions, health and work-life balance

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We are living in a time of great change, bringing different needs and expectations from the workforce. To attract top talent, progressive employers are prioritising employees’ life ambitions, health and work-life balance. Companies are starting to provide support for female, trans and non-binary staff throughout life experiences like the menopause, fertility issues, pregnancy and miscarriage. Increasingly, employees view this support as essential.

If organisations are to achieve a gender-diverse workforce and leadership pipeline, they must look towards a new generation of employee benefits and actively drive more women towards senior positions. A diverse executive and senior leadership team demonstrates that a company walks the walk when it comes to diversity, equality and inclusion (DE&I), providing role models for talent at all levels of the organisation.

Role models

People want to see role models at the top that they can aspire to, and know they can have a great career - or they simply won’t stick around. 

What’s more, clients want to work with organisations that take diversity and inclusion seriously. We have been taking action in a range of ways, from how we hire, to how we progress our talent at Capgemini. However, it’s also important to consider how inclusive our employee benefits are - we believe we can demonstrate our commitment in ways that make a real difference to our people.

Find the right benefits for your people 

First and foremost, find out what your employees want and need and ensure you are supporting a diverse range of people. Rather than making assumptions, there are a number of ways to ask them. We regularly run focus groups, both general and targeted, to find out how we can better support different groups within our workforce.

We also send out diversity and inclusion-specific surveys. It was through these that we identified the need to focus more on age inclusion. We realised that we can't make assumptions – everyone is on their own path and ambitions, wants and needs don’t fall neatly into age categories. 

We continue to assess these surveys to make sure there’s not a difference in employee experience between men and women and different demographic groups within the workforce. We also look at the needs of our workforce from an intersectionality point of view, for example running focus groups for black women to understand how we can better support them in the workplace.

It's through these various channels that we have been able to better understand the needs of our people, including women of menopausal age: the fastest-growing demographic of the UK workforce. One in four women going through the menopause will consider leaving their job due to their symptoms.  

Make employee benefits accessible, digital and inclusive 

We are a hybrid and flexible working organisation and strive to provide employee benefits and resources that can be accessed day or night, whether in the workplace, at home or en route to a client site. 

Practical employee benefits to consider

Flexible working is something that we’ve long focused on as an option for our workforce and this will increase as we move towards a more hybrid work structure. But there are other practical benefits that we’ve introduced, such as increasing the level of life assurance we offer and providing financial wellbeing support. Making the right advice and guidance accessible during working hours can really make your employees’ experience a better one. 

When it comes to the opportunity to job-share, it’s vital to recognise that people want to work in different ways.

These benefits really make an impact

You can’t put a price on people telling you how much such this support truly means for them. We're focusing on health issues around menopause and fertility, because if we want to improve diversity from a gender balance point of view, this support is crucial. The last thing we want is for any of our experienced colleagues to leave because they don’t feel supported or understood. 

It’s vital to do all you can to listen – that is the first step to making your benefits truly inclusive. 

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