Hunter-based businesses are amongst 141 nationally who were named Employers of Choice for Gender Equality by the Workplace for Gender Equality Agency (WGEA).
The WGEA Employer of Choice for Gender Equality citations recognise businesses active commitment to achieving gender equality in the workplace.
Amongst those who were named for 2018-19 were University of Newcastle and Calvary, both of which have held the title for five consecutive years now.
The University of Newcastle’s focus on gender equality has intensified over the past five years, particularly with regard to the under-representation of women at senior levels of academia. In 2014, women represented only 23 per cent of Level E academics (professors), which was below sector average. Thanks to a range of initiatives under the Senior Academic Women Strategy, that number has grown to 30 per cent in 2018 and the organisation now sits above the sector average.
University of Newcastle Vice-Chancellor, Professor Alex Zelinsky AO said this result comes from an enduring commitment and shared focus.
“It manifestly changes the landscape for female academics in the earlier stages of their careers as well as for our female students,” Alex said.
“As educators of the next generation, we take our leadership role seriously and will continue to champion gender balance for a better future,” he said.
In 2014, the University of Newcastle was one of only 76 organisations across Australia to receive the agency’s citation in its inaugural year. In 2018-19 the number of accredited organisations has grown to 141 – of which only 20 are education and training institutions.
“We are very pleased to see the number of organisations recognised for their commitment to workplace gender equality almost double in five years. It sends a strong signal that change is accelerating,” Alex said.
Calvary is another organisation that is committing to bridging the gender gap for women in the workplace.
Calvary’s National Chief Executive Officer and a WGEA Ambassador for Pay Equity, Martin Bowles said the organisation is proud of what it has achieved for gender equality.
“We are very proud of all the work that Calvary has achieved in gender equality and respects that it is a journey where every one of us has a role to play in achieving gender equality in the workplace,” Martin said.
“But as a leader, it is important that we create a positive gender inclusive workplace culture and one that values difference which will then flow into the community we live in. My personal commitment is to raise awareness and promote behaviours that will contribute towards achieving this at Calvary.”
Calvary’s National Director People and Corporate Services, Damien Johnston said Calvary is a major employer of women.
“With over 12,000 employees, 80% of which are female, Calvary is proud to highlight that we have achieved 60% female representation at executive level and 70% female representation at manager level,” Damien said.
“In practical terms, Calvary has defined its leadership capabilities and is implementing developmental programs, systems and processes that embed gender neutrality, that is, ensure there is no gender bias in processes such as recruitment, promotion, development opportunities, remuneration setting and performance reviews.”
This year Calvary will commit its efforts to workplace gender equality by exploring flexibility in the workplace; promoting career pathways; addressing systemic favouritism; monitoring pay equity and market positioning.
WGEA Director Libby Lyons said WGEA Employer of Choice for Gender Equality citation provided a rigorous and sophisticated roadmap to guide employers along the path to gender equality.
“Every employer committed to gender equality embarks on their own unique journey,” Libby said.
“All 2018-19 EOCGE citation holders are united by their determination and commitment to achieving workplace gender equality. I congratulate all of these organisations for being agents of change, leading the way forward for other Australian employers to follow.”
IMAGE | Calvary’s National Chief Executive Officer and a WGEA Ambassador for Pay Equity, Martin Bowles.
The Workplace Gender Equality Agency is an Australian Government statutory agency created by the Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012.
The Agency is charged with promoting and improving gender equality in Australian workplaces.
It works collaboratively with employers providing advice, practical tools and education to help them improve their gender performance. Their staff are workplace gender equality specialists and provide industry-specific advice.
It also works with employers to help them comply with the reporting requirements under the Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012. This reporting framework aims to encourage measures that improve gender equality outcomes and has been designed to minimise the regulatory burden on business.