GlaxoSmithKline aims to create an inclusive workplace to attract and retain the most talented people from all backgrounds and cultures.
Its focus is on creating an inclusive organisation where all employees feel engaged, knowing their work makes an important contribution. GlaxoSmithKline’s inclusive environment welcomes different knowledge, perspectives, experiences and working styles from across the globe. Not only does this enhance individual creativity and innovation but it also makes great business sense.
The company undertakes the following initiatives to ensure inclusion and diversity in its working environments.
1) Gender Equality
Female CEOs make up only 24 of the 2018 Fortune 500 list. GlaxoSmithKline has demonstrated its commitment to inclusivity and diversity by appointing the first woman to lead a major pharmaceutical company. New head Emma Walmsley explains there’s a long way still to go. Companies should be more proactive “sponsoring and supporting all types of diversity to get to the senior leadership positions”. She adds that for modern employers, building trust is important. It’s crucial that, “whoever you are … you can bring the very best version of yourself to work without fear”.
In practice, this means attracting and supporting a workforce that reflects the diverse communities GlaxoSmithKline operates in and collaborates with. The percentage of women in the company is rising. Female non-executive directors make up 31% of the Board. In the Corporate Executive Team, three members are women, making up 23% of the team.
2) LGBT+ network
The British LGBT+ Awards recently named the UK branch of GlaxoSmithKline’s LGBT+ Spectrum network a Top 10 staff network. The company has also been recognised as a Top 100 Employer by Stonewall for their commitment to LGBT+ colleagues. The company celebrates LGBT+ month and actively promotes the LGBT Role Models programme. Individuals have the opportunity to explore what it means to be a role model.
3) Project Search
There are over 11.6 million disabled people in the UK alone. Around half are working-age adults (16-64 years), but sadly a significant proportion of this population is unemployed. As one of the largest healthcare companies in the UK, GlaxoSmithKline is committed to bridging that employment gap.
In 2011, the company introduced Project SEARCH, a year-long placement programme for 12 young people between 17-24 with learning disabilities. The scheme provides practical work experience and prepares young people for the world of work. Working closely with Action on Disability, employment opportunities are identified for a number of the alumni. They’re all assisted with finding meaningful work.
The initiative has brought a number of benefits to the company. It’s resulted in a more inclusive and disability-friendly culture, as well as fresh thinking from the students themselves.
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