Australian companies rank better than other companies in Asia-Pacific for their diversity and inclusion efforts. Companies in Australia scored on average 76% while companies in Indonesia scored on average 24%. Furthermore, the lowest-scoring Australian company still got a higher score (62%) than the highest-scoring Indonesian company (57%), in a latest report by Equality Group supported by Equilibrium, a FiscalNote company.
Equality Group’s head of research, Dr. Keon West, said, Australian companies tended to score highly for two key reasons: "They often had leadership teams which were gender-diverse, and their websites clearly outlined the recruitment strategies that were in place to ensure hiring of diverse candidates, particularly people from indigenous backgrounds."
The majority of Australian companies tend to engage in actively recruiting minority groups underrepresented in their geographical regions and highlight this through publicly available information spanning all messaging platforms.
Telstra with a company score of 92% topped the ranking in the region. Other Australian companies like BHP Group, ANZ Bank, Fortescue Metals and Woolworths Group were also in the national top five.
Australian organisations had a significant level of gender diversity among senior executives and leadership teams.
DEI topics are no longer limited to the HR departments of companies
The companies that stand out for their diversity and inclusion efforts and rank better than others don't have a siloed approach towards DE&I aspects.
"The C-Suite and boards who take personal ownership of DEI are the ones who see real and tangible progress made. Business leaders need to realise the critical role they play in setting the DEI agenda for their organisation. They set the tone from the top for others to follow," said Equality Group CEO Hephzi Pemberton.
The study looked at leading organisations in Australia, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Taiwan and Thailand. Businesses were analysed across an array of industries, including finance, mining, technology, communications, and manufacturing.
Information gleaned from publicly available materials — such as an organisation’s website, social media profiles, HR policies, and ESG reports — was used to rank DEI performance using Equality Group’s Inclusive Index.