PR News 2016 Diversity in PR Awards: Organization

Winner: White Martins

With a primarily male workforce throughout its 100 years, White Martins decided to change things up and promote gender equality in the workplace.

Starting in 2010, the company implemented an action plan with three focus points: attraction, retention and culture, with development activities and training sessions aimed at preparing women for taking over leadership positions. Other initiatives included requiring women to be present in all selection processes; making available 2,000 books on inclusion on the e-learning platform; and organizing annual seminars with leadership and female groups in order to identify obstacles to professional development and growth.

Nowadays, White Martins celebrates a significant increase in the number of female employees. In lower-tier positions, women already form 45.8% of interns and 57.1% of young apprentices. One of the highlights was the Medical Business Executive Committee, which was responsible for a 40% increase in diversity and an 80% increase in the number of women in leadership positions in the last three years. Moreover, pregnancy is not viewed as an obstacle to employees' careers: since 2012, the company has had 10 promotions granted during an employee's pregnancy or immediately after her maternity leave.

From 2015 onward, inclusion of African-Brazilians will be one of White Martins' guiding principles in terms of diversity. In conjunction with a qualitative survey company, White Martins is carrying out surveys with employees from Brazilian states in order to create groups to discuss the promotion of racial equality. The purpose is to understand and overcome the main obstacles in connection with the inclusion of this population segment, and define the strategies that will be implemented throughout 2016.