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LGBTQ+: India Inc is yet to turn India Inclusive

Most MNCs have LGBTQ+ inclusion goals, but gaps remain: Randstad study

On the flip side, 53% of the surveyed organisations stated that they do not have career development opportunities for people from the LGBTQ+ community.
On the flip side, 53% of the surveyed organisations stated that they do not have career development opportunities for people from the LGBTQ+ community.

While 60% of MNC leaders are LGBTQ+ immersive in terms of inclusion goals in their leadership, only 9.5% organisations have made extremely significant efforts to be LGBTQ+ inclusive, while 21.4% took average efforts and a vast majority (69.2%) took very limited efforts to be truly inclusive in their organisational approach, a study has found.

Conducted by Randstad India, in partnership with Randstad RiseSmart and Women’s Web, the study on equity, diversity & inclusion (ED&I), titled ‘Inclusion without Exception’, noted that close to 70% of the respondents feel there have been no significant efforts in the direction of LGBTQ+ inclusion in their respective organisations.

When it comes to consciously hiring people from LGBTQ+ community, the study showed that a fraction (23%) are putting in such efforts, mostly from MNCs (62%). But most such hiring takes place at the junior (33%) and middle levels (31%). Also, 36% of the surveyed organisations mentioned that they turn to external communities for inclusion support, while 40% indicated they provide training for reducing hiring biases towards LGBTQ+ workgroups.

On the flip side, 53% of the surveyed organisations stated that they do not have career development opportunities for people from the LGBTQ+ community.
The survey also revealed that the level of comfort that people from the LGBTQ+ community have in declaring their identity continues to be low (34%).

Additionally, 44% of the surveyed organisations stated that no sensitisation programmes are being run for employees, which could be a reason for the hesitance to bring their true self forward and lack of awareness on the part of employees.

Viswanath PS, MD & CEO, Randstad India, said that while diversity at work can be achieved by making changes in the hiring strategy, nurturing inclusion is a wider concept that involves the inclusion of people at all levels: gender, ethnicity, sexuality and ability. “Although the majority of India Inc is in the ‘reinforcement’ stage of creating a truly inclusive workplace, I believe that by creating the right role models, leaders walking the talk, investing in the right infrastructure and by establishing legal frameworks and policies, we could fast track positive changes in this direction,” Viswanath said. “It’s a win-win situation—inclusive organisations have the talent edge, they enjoy increased employee engagement, improved customer delight scores and willingness of partnerships.”

—Close to 70% respondents believe there have been no significant efforts in the direction of LGBTQ+ inclusion;
—Among those who believe changes have been significant, 70% of respondents work with MNCs;
—53% of organisations do not have career development opportunities for the people from LGBTQ+ community;
—Lack of infrastructure and facilities (such as benefits for same-sex partners, gender reassignment surgery coverage, etc) and sensitisation across workgroups make LGBTQ+ members feel not included at work in India Inc.

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