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Diversity strong among HRD Asia’s Employers of Choice

Strong female representation defines HRD Asia's Employers of Choice, with companies like Malia Group and SEEK leading the way.

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High female representation in executive roles is common among HRD Asia’s top employers, like Malia Group (56%) and SEEK (55%).
Strategies include gender-neutral job advertising, balanced candidate lists, and bias reduction workshops.
Emphasis on diversity, equity, and inclusion in hiring and communication is key to their success.

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Strong female representation in the workforce is the common denominator among this year’s Best Companies to Work for in Asia.  

Among the recently revealed HRD’s (Human Resources Director) Employers of Choice is Lebanon-based Malia Group, which has achieved a 56% female representation among its executive-level employees. This includes their CEO, Joanne Chebab, who has been leading the organisation since January 2016.  

The vast female executive representation comes despite women still being “vastly underrepresented” in the CEO role, according to recent data from the Russell Reynolds Associates. In the firm’s Lebanon operations, there is also almost a 50:50 ratio between genders in most roles. 

Another Employer of Choice, SEEK, has also achieved a 55% female representation in its workforce. Among its strategies to ensure diversity include: 

– Third-party gender-neutralising technology to help reduce gender bias in job advertising. 

– Gender balance on candidate long and short lists, where possible, ensuring female representation on interview panels. 

– Targeted education such as “Overcoming Bias in Hiring” workshops for the hiring team 

– A requirement for recruitment agencies when used to provide A gender-balanced short list of candidates, where possible, before proceeding with interviews.

Philippine-based organisations,AboitizLand and Ayala Land Premier, also have a huge number of women making their workforce, with 56% and 59%, respectively. Rob Guevarra, manager for talent management and organisational development at AboitizLand, said they also try to use diversity as a “foundation in terms of giving a positive work experience to our team members.”

Michel Mchantaf, head of human resources at Malia Group, shared that their success is due to their HR team’s strong emphasis on diversity, equity, and inclusion. “We work with competency-based interviewing and don’t discriminate between genders. We also remunerate based on performance and competencies. We were among the first companies in Lebanon that assigned female employees to warehouse supervisor positions because the stereotype is you will be dealing with a man. All our group communications are gender neutral and also our career pages.”

Find out more about this year’s Employer’s of Choice here. 

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