As a global business delivering technology and digital solutions, Capgemini faces the universal problem familiar to any IT company: how to attract and recruit more women and how to make sure they progress within the organisation. Capgemini sees diversity and inclusion as an issue that has the potential to transform its business and that therefore needs tackling company-wide. Its approach is beginning to see results,
Why is this important?
Improving gender diversity is not a minorityinterest topic that can sit on the sidelines of a company’s activities. If it is to succeed, it needs a structured and strategic approach, as does any project critical to the business. It needs to be understood and championed at the most senior level, adequately resourced
and promoted throughout the organisation. Arguably it requires even more attentive treatment than most business projects, since it also requires cultural change.
What are the results?
- The number of female applicants rose by 25% between 2016 and 2017. More women were also appointed, although the increase was less significant.
- The community of graduate trainees is now equally split between men and women.
- The intake of female apprentices is also rising but more slowly. Women now make up almost 40% among the graduate intake and apprentice combined.
- More women are staying with the company and being promoted.
What is being done?
Capgemini UK has introduced a new strategy called Active Inclusion, aimed at improving diversity and inclusion in all areas, including the recruitment and advancement of women. The strategy is treated as a business transformation project.
- It is designed and led by the head of HR, but with the board acting as business sponsors and promoting it across the organisation. Leaders in every business area are responsible for their inclusivity plan and for encouraging discussion of issues relating to diversity and inclusion.
- Clear targets are set – for the numbers of women working at every level – and these are continually tracked.
- At the start of the initiative, all employees were invited to give feedback and suggestions for improvement. The survey is to be repeated after 18 months.
- Barriers to the employment and progression of women are investigated in every aspect of the business. These include both the attitudes and perceptions that can lead to unconscious bias against women and the practical challenges that can, for example, face women with families.
- Training in inclusivity is provided for managers: this goes beyond addressing bias and covers practical issues too. Women are represented in leadership development and training at least proportionate to their numbers at each level.
- Recruitment processes have been thoroughly reviewed and a ‘returnship’ programme introduced to support women coming back to work, even after several years out.