EDF wins the National award for Equality

EDF Energy has become the first energy company to achieve the National Equality Standard award. 

EDF Energy has become the first energy company to achieve the National Equality Standard (NES) award, the UK’s most comprehensive assessment of diversity and inclusion in business. The NES has been developed and sponsored by EY in partnership with 18 other UK and global companies and is supported by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), the Home Office and the Confederation of British Industry (CBI).

The company’s policies and practices were assessed against 70 competencies covering all nine protected characteristics contained in the Equality Act 2010* for both compliance and best practice. To complete the assessment, over 120 members of staff were interviewed about their awareness and experience of diversity and inclusion and hundreds of documents were submitted for evaluation.

Steve Varley, Chairman and UK&I Managing Partner at EY, presented EDF Energy’s CEO Vincent de Rivaz with the official accreditation at EY’s offices in central London today. Employees from across the business were invited to celebrate the achievement.

Janet Hogben, Chief People Officer at EDF Energy, said:  “Creating a culture that is truly inclusive takes hard work and commitment. Our employees and networking groups have been at the forefront of driving change and we are delighted that their efforts have been formally recognised by the National Equality Standard.

“We believe that a more diverse workforce will out-think, out-innovate and out-perform less diverse organisations. The National Equality Standard has provided us with a great call to action to engage everyone in the business and continue our journey to embed diversity and inclusion fully at EDF Energy.”

Jo Heath, Head of NES Assessment Delivery at EY, commented: “Since I started working with EDF Energy, I have been able to see firsthand just how much progress they have made on diversity & inclusion issues.  Their corporate culture is an excellent example of how visible passion and strategic commitment to D&I has increased staff engagement and openness.  Leaders have clear ownership and accountability for progress against this agenda and the positivity amongst their staff at all levels really shone through in the interviews we conducted.”

As part of the assessment, EDF Energy was recognised for having outstanding practices in 21 specific areas, such as its mentoring programme to support gender diversity at all levels of the company, its employee networks, the business’s support for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) employees and the work it has done to support unemployed young people gain employment skills via its BAME network and recruitment team.

The final report provides recommendations and areas for improvement to enable the company to further improve its policies and practices. EDF Energy is the third business to achieve the National Equality Standard from EY since it was established in 2013.

Representatives from EDF Energy’s employee networks and its D&I team receive the National Equality Standard award, pictured with Arun Batra (CEO) and Jo Heath from NES

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EDF Energy

Our goal in life is to bring affordable, low-carbon energy to everyone. Easy to say; definitely not easy to achieve. In fact, it takes all of the effort and ingenuity we can muster. Rest assured, there’s plenty of both here at one of the UK’s largest energy companies (and a major part of one of Europe’s biggest energy groups). It’s certainly paying off, all that energy, enthusiasm and expertise. Today, we’re the country’s top producer of not just electricity but low-carbon electricity. But there are even bigger challenges ahead. And we need even sharper minds and smarter ideas to solve them. Could you help us shape the UK’s energy future?

(Article first published media.edfenergy.com 17/12/2015)

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