Multiplicity of thoughts, ideas and backgrounds adds meaning to our society. However, it also generates multiple identities that may lead to disturbances. Different viewpoints, backgrounds and approaches can lead to better outcomes. Managing diversity is not an option; it is a business imperative for all organisations who wish to have sustainable growth in the new socio-economic order.
India is the seventh largest country in the world. A culture change occurs every two hundred kilometres. Most organisations today have a diverse workforce. Managing the expectations of diverse employees and keeping them engaged is not an easy task. Organisations cannot assume and apply a common formula to attract, retain and motivate all employees in their organisation. They need to create an environment where no one is advantaged or disadvantaged—namely an environment where ‘we’ means everyone.
India continues to be the one-stop destination for global sourcing, with a 56% share in 2015.¹ The information technology-business process management (IT-BPM) workforce is becoming increasingly diverse—in terms of socio-economic, linguistic, multinational and regional backgrounds. The Indian IT-BPM industry has seen the number of women employed increase to over 1.3 million, which is more than a third of the total workforce. Women constitute more than half of the current entry-level hires. Over the last few years, the industry has also been actively pursuing inclusion of persons with disabilities (PwDs) as well as encouraging an overall inclusive work culture.
The NASSCOM Corporate Awards for Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion, constituted in 2007, recognise companies that have adopted and implemented policies and practices to promote diversity, and have enabled inclusion of their employees to contribute to the success of their enterprise. These awards acknowledge the fact that a ‘culture of inclusion’ has become a business imperative.