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Konica Minolta recognised for gender equality

Thursday, 08 December 2016
By Jake Nelson

Konica Minolta Australia is among a hundred companies in different fields listed as leaders in gender equality by the Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA) today, passing a number of strict criteria to attain the Employer of Choice for Gender Equality (EOCGE) citation.

106 EOCGE citations were awarded in 2016, up from 90 last year and 76 in 2014. This year’s recipients, including Konica Minolta, displayed positive trends including flexibility for all employees across an organisation; programs to support women into leadership and technical positions; tailored parental leave and return-to-work policies; supporting men’s caring responsibilities; and robust analysis and correction of gender pay gaps.

Dr David Cooke, Managing Director Konica Minolta

Dr David Cooke, Managing Director of Konica Minolta, told Print21 that the citation – its first entry onto the list – meant a great deal to the company. “For some years now we’ve been trying to create a culture where everyone is treated equally, and eliminate discrimination from our business. One of our target areas was gender equity, to make sure women had equal treatment to their male counterparts as regards promotion, senior management positions, and of course ensuring that there is no gender pay gap,” Cooke said.

Cooke said that gender discrimination should already be a thing of the past, and the need for conversations about the issue should have ended a long time ago. “I almost think it’s a bit embarrassing that, in this day and age, in a country like Australia, we still need to talk about why 50 percent of people in the workforce are still experiencing discrimination,” he said.

According to Cooke, Konica Minolta will continue its efforts to recruit and promote talented women, including in technical service staff and management positions. “We have to stay the course, we have to continue to be alert to subconscious discrimination against female candidates when recruiting or promoting. We need to eliminate unconscious bias, and look for opportunities to bring more competent women into our organisation,” he said.

Libby Lyons, Director WGEA.

Libby Lyons, Director WGEA, said that employers are increasingly recognising the benefits of equal gender participation at all levels of an organisation and its effect on workplace culture and performance, but there is still work to be done. “WGEA data shows there is progress towards gender equality in Australian workplaces, but it is too slow. It is only through more employers taking the initiative to promote gender equality in the workplace that we will see the pace of change pick up.

“That is why it is so encouraging to see more than 100 organisations meet the very high standard required to receive the WGEA Employer of Choice for Gender Equality citation this year. I congratulate all the 2016 citation holders for their commitment and recognition of the strong business case for gender equality. I hope to see continued growth in this community of leading practice employers,” Lyons said.

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