“Inclusion is the ability to engage diversity in your workforce, so that everyone has equal opportunities to contribute.”
— Shirley Davis Sheppard, VP of diversity, inclusion and workplace flexibility at the Society for Human Resource Management.
In recent years employee retention and engagement has become a top priority for large organisations. Employee turnover is at an all-time high and any large workforce is changing shape, fast. A vast group of ageing employees bring extremely valuable expertise along with a new set of needs . New talent are coming in with the high expectations and strong opinions of the digitally-native ‘Generation Z’.
Generation Z are set to hold employers to account like never before. They want products, services and jobs that respect their ethics and their individuality.
“Younger consumers don’t distinguish between the ethics of a brand, the company that owns it, and its network of partners and suppliers. A company’s actions must match its ideals, and those ideals must permeate the entire stakeholder system.”
– McKinsey, ‘True Gen’: Generation Z and its implications for companies
In a study of more than 5000 employees in the United States, a recent study found significant costs linked to low levels of employee engagement, as well as benefits to productivity and ultimately bottom-line impact where organisations get it right.
Who’s leading the way?
From the very first days of the company, Microsoft has sought to enable individuals and organisations around world to do great things.
They know that having a diverse workforce which includes people with disabilities is essential if they are going to deliver on a mission to empower every person and every organisation to achieve more. To help facilitate this, Microsoft have built world-leading inclusive hiring programs specifically targeting talent with autism, intellectual development issues and other disabilities.
They conduct ability hiring events, inclusive Interviews, disability education and etiquette team training as well as a centralised workplace adjustment service – or ‘accommodations’.