Diversity and inclusion is becoming a bigger focus for New Zealand organisations, entries to the annual Diversity Awards NZ indicate.
The awards are now in their 19th year and Diversity Works New Zealand chief executive Bev Cassidy-Mackenzie says she is delighted that this year there are even more businesses demonstrating their commitment to developing a culture that is inclusive for all people regardless of ethnicity, age, gender, physical abilities or sexual orientation.
Entries are up more than 30% across the nine award categories, compared with 2015, and there is also a new category, the Emerging Diversity and Inclusion Award, which recognises a milestone achievement by organisations which have recently embarked on their diversion and inclusion journey.
Other categories are:
- Tomorrow’s Workforce Award, recognising innovative responses to a changing and increasingly age diverse workforce.
- Cultural Celebration Award, celebrating cultural and ethnic engagement.
- Empowerment Award, rewarding innovative responses to gender balance.
- Skills Highway Award, which celebrates organisations that recognise the importance of numeracy and literacy in adding value to the workforce.
- Positive Inclusion Award, recognising inclusivity in the workforce, specifically in relation to initiatives to recognise and embrace employees sexual orientation and gender identity.
- Divers-ability Award, celebrating innovative responses to employment opportunities for differently abled people, including those with physical and mental health conditions.
- Work Life Balance Award, rewarding innovative techniques to tap into their employees’ talents by recognising that work is part of a rich and multifaceted life.
- Walk The Talk Award, celebrating leaders who exemplify excellence in managing a diverse workforce.
A supreme award winner, selected from the winners of each category, will also be announced at a gala dinner event on August 24. Last year’s winners included Vector, Simpson Grierson, Bupa Care Services NZ, ANZ, Goodman Fielder NZ, Coffee Educators, Sovereign and Vodafone.
Cassidy-Mackenzie says Diversity Works New Zealand is proud to host the annual Diversity Awards NZ with the generous support of a number of organisations including Coca-Cola Amatil NZ, Russell McVeagh, Skills Highway – Tertiary Education Commission, Sovereign, State Services Commission, Te Puni Kokiri, and Vodafone NZ.
“Without their commitment and dedication to furthering workplace diversity and inclusion in New Zealand, we would not be able to recognise and share the wonderful stories of so many organisations with truly inspirational workplace initiatives,” says Cassidy-Mackenzie.