Business & Finance Awards

Importance of Diversity, Equality & Inclusion to be recognised at 2023 Business & Finance Awards

By Business & Finance
20 June 2023
Pictured: Photographed at the 2022 Business & Finance Awards in association with KPMG: Brian O’Neill (centre) collecting the Diversity, Equality & Inclusion Award on behalf of Aviva presented by Daniel Kelly, IRG Programme Manager and Tam Hanlon, Diversity & Inclusion Manager at Indeed.

This year’s Business & Finance Awards, in association with KPMG, will take place on 8th December at The Convention Centre Dublin. The 49th iteration of the awards will continue the increased focus on diversity, equality and inclusion of recent years. Now, for employers and employees, it is considered a benchmark of success to be considered part of a company that values inclusivity. Nominations are open and interested parties can go to the Business & Finance Awards website.

Winner of Diversity, Equality & Inclusion Award (D,E&I) 2022

In 2022, the D,E&I Award was presented to Aviva who have been a leading light with regards to equal opportunities for employees. Through a number of successful initiatives and a company culture that promotes and facilitates diversity, the firm has made huge strides in D,E&I.

Brian O’Neill accepted the award on behalf of Aviva as presented by Daniel Kelly, IRG Programme Manager and Tam Hanlon, Diversity & Inclusion Manager at Indeed.

“Aviva represents each of the company’s 1450 employees through their Pride, Balance, Carers and Avivability committees,” the judges said in their comments.

“Aviva has achieved increased gender parity in leading roles, with women now in the key roles of  CEO, CFO and CRO.”

The D,E&I award celebrates companies that contribute to improving the lives of their employees while also enhancing the civic environment in which they operate. Northern Trust received the award at the awards ceremony in 2021.

What is DE&I?

Diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) is the catch-all description given to the process through which employers protect employees from discrimination.

Diversity entails employing and valuing people from a range of varied backgrounds (class, race, gender, sexuality, etc) across all levels of a company. In order to limit the propagation of bias, it is important to have such voices heard in decision-making processes.

Equity is the establishment of fair processes and opportunities for all, regardless of background. It is also the acknowledgement of factors that have historically blocked minority groups from succeeding in the workplace.

Inclusion refers to a company culture that hones belonging and respect for difference. It also ensures people are represented in every facet of the business.

How can companies generate strong DE&I?

Having strong DE&I leads to better outcomes for companies. “There are clear correlations between diversity and business performance,” says a 2022 McKinsey & Company report.

The report draws from data that “encompasses 15 countries and more than 1,000 large companies,” alongside research on employee sentiment.

“Analysis of 2019 data shows that companies in the top quartile for gender diversity within executive teams were 25 percent more likely than companies in the fourth quartile to have above-average profitability (up from 21 percent in 2017 and 15 percent in 2014).”

The report also notes that, despite evidence of its success, “progress in building diverse workforces remains stubbornly slow.”

DE&I provides access to a wider talent pool, with greater emphasis on diversity of thought and experience. Companies can do a lot to ensure DE&I is honed and improved:

  • Encourage open dialogue and transparency in decision-making processes.
  • Develop and facilitate conversations and themed events that encourage learning and intersectional dialogue.
  • Have a zero tolerance policy for bigotry and microaggressions.
  • Highlight collaboration between employees.
  • Allow equality of opportunity for all employees.
  • Facilitate diverse leadership so all employees can see opportunities for job progression regardless of background.

Business & Finance Awards

You can submit nominations for this year’s awards here.

Read more:

Launch of 2023 Business & Finance Awards