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At Siemens we value diversity as the inclusion and collaboration of different thinking, backgrounds, experiences, expertise and individual qualities across all organizational levels.
In all our activities, actions, and programs, we want to make the most of the diversity in our workforce. We establish an open work environment for all of our employees, regardless of cultural background, ethnicity, origin, sexual orientation, or gender identity, expression, or characteristics. We create possibilities for diverse experiences and interactions, with the overall goal of achieving a diversity of mindsets throughout the company. To help our employees optimally develop their talents, we offer challenging jobs with numerous development opportunities in a modern working environment. Wide-ranging options for health and work-life integration are included in our modern Siemens office concept.
Diversity strengthens our innovative capacity, unleashes the potential of Siemens’ employees and thereby directly contributes to our business success
Unconscious biases can impact the decisions we make without our being aware of it. All human beings have these unconscious thought patterns in the form of expectations and preferences – for example, with regard to men and women. Often, however, these are based on unsubstantiated assumptions or stereotypes, and can hinder us from making objective decisions. The Implicit Association Test, created by Harvard University, shows that more than 70% of people associate men with career and women with family. At Siemens, we want to sensitize our employees so that they can recognize these patterns and, with targeted training, learn to overcome them.
Systematic prevention of unconscious bias at work allows us to make fairer decisions
It has surely happened to you before: you startle yourself with a spontaneous action, reaction, or association. As part of an internal challenge, Siemens employees have shared some of these “unconscious bias moments” that have left them shaking their heads in retrospect. One employee, while shopping in the supermarket, came to the snap conclusion that a man buying pink yogurt must be buying it for his wife! But many of our employees have already been victims of stereotyping for a variety of reasons: because of their countries of origin, or because the way they speak or look does not match expectations. The online training program “Decide Fairly”, which was developed in collaboration with the “Chefsache” initiative, is intended to remedy this problem.
Both gender equally contribute to our business success. Over the past years, Siemens has strived to create significant more employment opportunities for women - from board level to every single working place, thus also contributing to the UN’s sustainable development goal “Gender Balance”. In 2016, Siemens signed the Women's Empowerment Principles (WEP) by United Nations to strengthening our women in the company. It’s the first worldwide initiative focused on directly promoting and strengthening of women in companies.
Our commitment promoting women along all levels in the company does not end with complying legal requirements. Siemens AG intends to increase the percentage of women in its top management positions. For both of the company’s top two management levels in Germany, the share is to be raised to 10 percent by the end of June 2017. We further more foster various initiatives, programs and measures to trigger an culture change to gender parity.
March 8th marks International Women’s Day, and this year’s theme is #BeBoldForChange. What does being bold for change mean when it comes to work? We spoke to two women at Siemens who’ve lived by this mantra throughout their careers.
Our employees are as global as our locations. Siemens employs staff from 171 countries, and has offices in more than 200. At Siemens Germany alone, over 121 nations are represented, and approximately 8,100 employees have a foreign passport. This internationality of our workforce is reflected in all regions and on all levels: our global Management Team consists of employees from over 127 countries.
Culture of inclusion
At Siemens, our culture of inclusion doesn’t end with the filling of required quotas. We promote diversity and want all employees to be able to be themselves. We support our employees’ many different ways of life as much as possible, for example by offering childcare, flexible work schedules, diversity employee networks, and workplaces equipped for the disabled.
Ability @ Siemens
For us at Siemens, Inclusion is a holistic mindset. Not only do we want to set an example of accessibility, we want to pave the way for inclusion in other companies. We have learned – you cannot prescribe inclusion in the interplay between man, environment and activity. You need to live accessibility and inclusion in the day to day. Our employees demonstrate how to overcome the “hurdles in the head” every single day – and we support them.
Accessibility and inclusion need to go hand in hand. This is the only way to achieve the social inclusion of 100% of the population.
Inclusion creates an atmosphere of acceptance that profoundly enhances the company climate. All measures that promote inclusion achieve this: Employees feel more motivated and committed. Accessible and inclusive work environments open up perspectives, especially in areas where the shortage of skilled workers is a growing concern: Inclusion enables us to retain talents.
Diversity and inclusion are an integral part of our corporate strategy. Our 2009 integration agreement set high standards: jobs, qualifications and training were redesigned to accommodate employees with disabilities. Today, digitization is taking on a key role in the universal design of accessible and inclusive workplaces. Apps, assistance systems, robotics as well as modern software and hardware offer new possibilities for people with disabilities. We aim to make the most of these options.