Whether you’re an experienced professional, or a recent graduate from university or high school, you’re probably craving a career that has real purpose, and with an employer who values you for who you are.
More than ever, we’re all sensitive to climate change, rising energy costs and social inequality. And more than ever, if you’re looking for a job, you probably want to devote your talents and energy to a company or venture that’s not just focused on generating profit, but that actively seeks to make a positive impact on the planet and society.
Just look at the flood of studies and reports highlighting gender inequality that are published each year to mark International Women’s Day. As a society, it’s clear we have a huge amount more to do to achieve equality – gender or otherwise – and many of us are keen to contribute to organizations that are striving to be part of the solution.
That’s one of the many reasons why corporate leaders, like myself, increasingly now regard environmental, social, and governance (ESG) factors – including diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) – as essential to safeguarding long-term value and accelerating sustainable growth.
Making a positive impact across all our operations
At Schneider Electric, we understood long ago how important it is to establish ESG commitments that aim to make a tangible, long-term positive impact on the planet and society – and that these need to be integrated holistically into all aspects of our business’s operations.
In other words, initiatives aimed at reducing carbon emissions and biodiversity loss, promoting gender equality, or enhancing employee well-being must not be siloed or pursued disjointedly by separate departments. They need to be embedded across all aspects of a company’s operations and pursued concurrently as part of an overarching strategy.
It’s precisely this unity of purpose that has seen Schneider Electric’s sustainability initiatives recognized in many, many awards and rankings over the years. In the DEI space alone, we’ve featured in the Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index (GEI) in each of the last six years, for instance. And the Financial Times recently named us a Diversity Leader for the fourth year running.
At Schneider, we call this holistic pursuit of our ESG targets “Impact”, and we’re proud to operate as an Impact company.
Being an Impact company is not about generating profit with a side-order of purpose. It’s about generating profit through purpose. This includes everything from determining the kinds of products and services we offer, to how we select and manage our suppliers.
The Impact concept helps to shape who we recruit and how we train and develop our employees. And it determines how we engage with our customers, investors, and the communities in which we’re active. Our employees are also empowered to “walk the talk” on sustainability by contributing to volunteering projects around the world.
Empowering women to make a positive impact for the present and future
Take, for example, the work we’re doing to boost diversity and inclusion, both among our own workforce and in our supply chain. This includes efforts aimed at tackling the gender pay gap for both men and women, while empowering all employees through, for example, flexible working arrangements and the provision of generous parental supports.
Indeed, women already comprise over 40% of both our executive committee and our board of directors. And, as part of our 2025 sustainability goals, we’re working to ensure that 50% of new hires by 2025 are women – up from around 41% now. By 2025, we also want 40% of our frontline managers, and 30% of our senior leaders, to be women. That’s up from a little over one-quarter now.
We consider this part and parcel of our effort to make a positive impact. And we won’t stop there. Once we reach the next milestone, we’ll continue to raise the bar until we’ve reached genuine equitable opportunity, and outcome, across all levels of our company.
And, of course, this commitment extends far beyond the issue of equality between men and women alone. For at Schneider Electric, we’re committed to being the most caring and inclusive company in the world, providing a safe and supportive environment for people of all genders, all sexual orientations, all generations, all origins and beliefs, and all (dis)abilities.
Come join us!
All this is to show that, at Schneider Electric, we’re about a lot more than purely generating profit. We’re also actively committed to realizing a cleaner, more sustainable, fairer future for all.