Today is International Women’s Day, a global event which celebrates the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. It’s a day when everyone can show their support for the cause of achieving gender equality.
The theme for Women’s Day 2016 is ‘Pledge for Parity’ which aims to accelerate the push for gender parity, which is currently moving at an alarmingly slow pace. The World Economic Forum predicted in 2014 that it would take until 2095 to achieve global gender parity, in 2015, they increased that estimate and now say the gender gap will not close entirely until 2133.
SThree are committed to doing all they can to support women and achieve the overall goal of gender equality and a core part of our efforts is the Identity Programme.
What is Identity?
The SThree Identity Programme was launched in 2011 and was designed to create a planned approach to managing diversity within the Company as well as increase overall awareness of gender diversity and inclusion issues.
Identity began by focusing on empowering women at the company and creating an environment in which they are supported to succeed. Since then it’s grown and evolved and is now a platform to improve diversity and inclusion for all employees.
We also take our understanding of the issues facing women in work out to our clients and advise many companies on what they can do to address their own gender and diversity challenges.
What is SThree currently doing to support diversity and inclusion?
SThree has embraced diversity and inclusion, with our senior management team championing open discussions and programmes designed to close the gender gap. This has resulted in SThree being named in the “Times Top 50 Employers for Women” for the second year running.
Our Identity Steering Committee are accountable for reviewing and monitoring progress against objectives and targets and they drive programmes that provide support to maximize the potential of our female talent.
We have continued to improve our reporting capabilities, and have established a reporting process that evaluates client and candidate information and delivers analysis on recruitment trends. This will drive future diversity and inclusion strategies for our customers.
Managing Partner Natasha Clarke wins Working Mums Champion Award.
Mentoring the next generation
To further support diversity in SThree we ensure that women are well represented in our Mentoring Programme. Mentoring is all about getting our most experienced senior managers to work with talented individuals and focus on developing skills and knowledge that will enhance professional and personal growth.
On average 35% of our people who have taken part in the Programme have been promoted within six months of starting it.
Maternity Buddy Programme
We’re really proud to honour our ongoing commitment to mothers returning to the workplace through the Maternity Buddy Programme. This allows expectant mothers to partner with other mothers who have returned to SThree so they can get advice on what to expect in the upcoming months and in the following years. With 84% of women returning to work after maternity leave, we must be doing something right.
We also achieved a Tommy’s accreditation for our Maternity Programme. Tommy’s is a charity that supports women during difficult situations such as miscarriage and stillbirth. As part of our accreditation, SThree parents can access a free midwife advice line, expectant mums receive a free book with information on health and managers receive information on how to best support expectant mothers.
Take a look at the video below which features Amandeep Fakey from our specialist brand Huxley in London who talks about her experience of some of the great work we’re doing to support the work/life balance for women at SThree.
What’s happening at SThree on International Women’s Day?
Corporate Social Responsibility
As part of our CSR commitment, the Company has partnered with City Gateway Women’s Project to support them in delivering skills course sessions. Employees at SThree supported the group of ten women to get their work skills accreditation with help in CV writing, interview skills and behaviours in the work place.
Olida, CSR Apprentice shares her story at an employability workshop with unemployed women from City Gateway.
We’ll also be funding 60 training places for women in Cambodia in cooperation with our charity partner SOS Children’s Villages. This training will enable SOS mothers and co-workers to develop professionally in their chosen areas of expertise with 612 co-workers expected to benefit from the training.
Our CSR Apprentice, Olida Khanom, will be speaking about her time as an Apprentice at SThree at an event held by the Economist today. We look forward to sharing her story with you all. Olida has also featured in the Evening Standard talking about Apprenticeships.
Event hosted by SThree Management
Senior Partner Marcus Francis will also be hosting an event in London which will be an opportunity for females in the business to get together to acknowledge and celebrate International Women’s Day. Marcus will be hosting the event, followed by a presentation from SThree Diversity Champion Natasha Clarke and external speaker Remi Olajoyegbe.
As you’re aware professional clothes play an important role in landing a job and as part of our CSR efforts, SThree across the globe is working with a number of charities to give people from underprivileged backgrounds the confidence boost they need for success.
The charities SThree is working with include, Dress for Success who support unemployed women across the globe, The Bowery Mission in New York who support people from homeless backgrounds and, Suited in Booted in London who assist unemployed men. Our aim is to donate over 100 ready to wear interview outfits for jobseekers.
We are raising funds for SOS Children’s Villages with some offices across the globe holding an international lunch where everyone is encouraged to bring in a dish from their cultural background or any country of their choice and with a donation for SOS Children’s Villages supporting women and girls.