Senior and line management are key to delivering on diversity agenda.

Awards show way forward.

Sophia Leung, CIO for J.P. Morgan in Asia Pacific has said that senior and line managers are primary stakeholders of a company’s Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) agenda. She was speaking having been named ‘Employer of the Year’ at the Women in IT Awards Asia held in Singapore and sponsored by Hays.

The Awards were organised by business technology site Information Age and aims to tackle detrimental gender stereotypes in the tech industry and redress gender imbalances by showcasing the achievements of women in the sector and identifying new role models for them. Since its launch, in 2015, the Women in IT Awards have showcased women in technology in London, New York, Ireland and Silicon Valley. This was the first year the awards expanded to celebrate women in technology in Singapore, Berlin and Toronto.

Speaking in an exclusive sponsor interview with Hays, Sophia stated that throughout the employee life cycle – from hiring and on-boarding to career progression and development – managers play a key role in ensuring positive outcomes for their employees. This makes them accountable for gender diversity in an organisation and is the reason why managers across J.P. Morgan are considered primary stakeholders of the company’s D&I agenda.

Sophia believes diverse managers grow diverse teams, and shares that the company’s commitment to educating and equipping their leaders to encourage diversity includes inclusiveness training, unconscious bias training, feedback loops and programs to develop diverse leadership. One example is Women on the Move (WOTM), a global, firm-wide initiative that provides access to tools that enable the successful development, advancement and retention of women. This is only one of several firm-wide initiatives undertaken, which Sophia details in her interview.

is well known that diverse organisations not only outperform those which are less diverse but are also more likely to attract and retain talented professionals. These sentiments were reflected in the 2019/2020 Hays Asia Diversity & Inclusion Report where 76 per cent of professionals across Asia said greater D&I in the workplace would have the most positive impact on company culture (76 per cent), followed by innovation (59 per cent) and retention of talent (53 per cent).

Recognising and harnessing the dynamism of diversity is an essential element of Hays’ expertise of enabling people and organisations to fulfil their potential. The decision to sponsor Women in IT Awards Asia was the latest initiative in the recruitment firm’s series of efforts to promote diversity in the region by recognising both the contributions of women, as well as their determination to lead from the front.

Grant Torrens, regional director at Hays Singapore commented: “As the world’s leading recruiter, we have an opportunity and responsibility to champion the building of more diverse workforces and inclusive workplaces. It is sign of how far women have come in the world of technology when we have an awards ceremony that acknowledges the achievement and accomplishments of female executives in the sector. We were honoured to sponsor the Women in IT Awards Asia which ties well into our own values of diversity and inclusion.”

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