(Above (From left) Prakash Chandran, president and CEO, Siemens Malaysia; Lily Rozita Mohd Khairi, head of legal, Shell Malaysia; Amanda Oh, director, human resources, BASF Asia-Pacific Service Centre; Datuk Sabariah Hassan, secretary-general, Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development Malaysia (MoWFCD); Nora Abdul Manaf, group chief human capital officer, Maybank Group; Datuk Seri Rohani Abdul Karim, Minister, MoWFCD; Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, Deputy Prime Minister; Puan Sri Noorainee Abdul Rahman, wife of Deputy Prime Minister; Datuk Azizah Mohd Dun, Deputy Minister, MoWFCD; Johan Mahmood Merican, CEO, Talent Corp; Sridharan Nair, managing director, PwC Malaysia; Yap Hsu Yi, senior HR manager, Organisation Capability Asia Pacific, PepsiCo Malaysia; Rahima Ibrahim, senior vice-president, head of HR, Siemens Malaysia)
Celebrating work-life practices
In the war for talent, more and more organisations are recognising the need to retain their employees by addressing their needs at different stages of their career and life cycle.
With its inaugural launch in 2013, the Life at Work Award recognises and celebrates organisations with leading workplace strategies which enable employees to achieve better success at work and in their personal lives by promoting diversity and inclusion (D&I), work-life integration and work-life practices.
This will undoubtedly lead to higher employee engagement, a more diverse workforce and ultimately resulting in better productivity and business performance.
This year, the award was enhanced by analysing improving trends of women representation in decision-making roles and women-friendly policies as well as work-life practices.
In addition, the judging criteria gave recognition to the following areas:
- Best New Initiative, which is awarded to the company that has the best implemented new initiative
- Making a Difference, awarded to the company that has implemented a work-life practice that has significantly impacted its employees
- CEO Champion, which recognises the CEO’s leadership and commitment to the organisation’s D&I initiatives
With the enhanced judging criteria, six organisations which participated in the Life At Work Award 2014 emerged winners in the following categories:
- Malaysian Organisation.
- International Organisation.
- Lean Organisation (less than 500 headcount).
- New Initiative.
- Making a Difference.
- CEO Champion.
Panel of judges
Highlights of key initiatives
Maybank (Winner – Malaysian Organisation)
- Female representation stood at 15% in 2009 and has since grown to 31% of women in senior management positions in 2013, resultant of an enabling work climate and “people dashboard” discipline monitoring.
- Flexible work arrangements availed on a case-to-case basis prior to 2013, since formally adopted as a policy and communicated groupwide covering fixed flexible schedule, flextime, flexible work location and conversion to part-time employment.
- Women Mentor Women Programme (WMW) support platform successfully launched for women leaders to accelerate their development and growth.
- 52% of participants from all the leadership development programmes from junior to the very senior levels are women.
- Maybank Tiger Cubs Childcare Centre, the first of its kind to operate on purely emergency basis in Malaysia, catering to a wider community of staff.
Shell (Winner – International Organisation)
- Shell in Malaysia has recruitment targets to hire females in technical and commercial skillpool which is in line with global targets.
- Senior Women Connect (SWC) is a global Shell network to help senior women support each other with gender specific leadership challenges.
- Option of virtual work arrangements for new parents can be discussed with line managers.
- A private room for nursing mothers with multiple cubicles, equipped with breast pump, steriliser, refrigerator, wash basins and lockers.
- Career break between three months and three years for personal development or family needs, with continuous contractual relationship with the company.
Pepsico (Winner – Lean Organisation)
- Current general manager (GM) is the first local woman GM for Malaysia.
- Advancement of women jointly driven by both female and male leaders who hold KPIs which include diversity and inclusion targets.
- “One Simple Thing” programme encourages employees to request for simple arrangements that would make work-life easier, which is linked to the manager’s performance ratings.
- Online cultural awareness training and cultural calculator tool for employees to build their own cultural profile.
- Annual people planning process identifies female bench strength for key roles, development plans and critical experiences required.
BASF (Winner – New Initiative)
- Flexibility@Work allows flexible choices including arriving at work anytime between 7am and 10am and working from home.
- Top management gender diversity ratio increased to over 60% since 2011.
- Analytics used to understand demographics of promotees. More than 50% of promotes in the second quarter of 2014 are women.
- Job sharing pilot implementation has led to the recruitment of seven women returnees.
- Qualified people who voluntarily leave their careers for a period of time are encouraged to re-enter the workforce.
Siemens (Winner – Making A Difference)
- Globally, Siemens established Global Leadership Organisation of Women (GLOW) to increase the proportion of women holding management and leadership positions.
- In Malaysia, Siemens launched the “PRIDE@Siemens” programme, with its key initiative – “Work from Home” – to promote employee engagement and improve retention rates.
- Through the Diversity Ambassador Network, Siemens appoints Diversity Ambassadors to firmly anchor diversity awareness as part of company culture.
- Attrition rate dropped from 14% in 2011 to 8% in 2013.
PwC (Winner – CEO Champion, Sridharan Nair)
- Ensures women are represented in PwC executive board, appointed a woman leader for largest business unit.
- Drives diversity and inclusion agenda for PwC Malaysia and increased people engagement index by 7% in the last two years.
- As head of PwC Malaysia’s Talent Development Council, he ensures female talents are well represented, which is currently 47% of the firm’s key talent pool.
- Enhanced flexible work arrangements by introducing Flex-Space, Flex-Benefits and Flex-Wear (jeans on Fridays).
- Increased maternity leave to three months and paternity leave to three days.
- Introduced Back2Work programme with a flexible work arrangements package to opt for 2.5 days to four days work week.
- Pioneered The (W)omentum Programme to support potential women talents progressing to directorship.
- Dell’s Connected Workplace allows employees to choose where and when to work, which allows them to be most productive.
- Dell Malaysia has an Executive Sponsor for Diversity and Inclusion.
- WISE (Women in Search of Excellence) champions interest of Dell women and represents women leadership voice.
- Malaysia Women’s Interest Network provides support to women employees through education and networking.
- “Modified Work Week” programme provides flexibility to work on a modified schedule in the office, maintaining total normal hours of work.
- “Adaptable Workplace” programme allows employees to work from home up to prescribed maximum number of days per week.
- GE Malaysia is a pilot location for internship programme for Women in Aviation sector.
- Employee assistance programme available to help women grow, with access to support on wellness and career, funded by company.
- Training programme developed with the needs of women in mind, encouraging women to speak, learn and encourage each other.
- Improvement in gender ratio for board level.
- Allows for part-time work for translator, newsreader, radio announcer.
- Conducted “City Survival Skills” training, attended by 160 women.
- Women represent 33% of company’s board of directors and 41% of senior and mid-management levels.
- Employees are given an option of additional 30 days of paid maternity leave as well as up to seven days of paid paternity leave.
- “Teleworking” allows employees the option to work away from the office, initiated since 2010.
- 50% of IHS Malaysia’s workforce are women, with a retention rate of 90% among women employees.
- Women’s Mentoring Circle is a development programme for women at senior manager level to rise and advance in their career.
- Flexible working arrangements such as flexi hours and telecommuting focusing on results rather than how, when or where the work gets done.
- Maternity leave can be extended for an additional month by working from home to allow new mothers to ease into work.
- 72% of top management positions are held by women.
- Option for flexi hours, staggered hours and telecommuting for all employees.
British American Tobacco
- “Bring Your Difference” Talent Brand embeds the importance of diversity, beyond just gender and nationalities.
- “Women in Leadership” programme is a key diversity pillar, focusing on accelerating performance, unlocking full career potential and enhancing leadership behaviour.
- EY “5 at 5” encourages employees to leave work earlier on the last Friday of the month for better work-life balance.
- EY Flexitime allows fluctuating start and end times to cater for lifestyle and commuting needs.
- Diversity and inclusion measures are tracked, including new hires at managerial level, promotions, succession planning and leadership development programme.
- Daycare claims of up to RM2,400 per year for those who are entitled under the Flexi-Benefit plans.
- Option of additional three months unpaid maternity leave after 90 days of paid maternity leave.
- Little Blue Planet childcare centre in the city equipped with library, learning centre and activity area.
- Women employees can be granted up to two years of sabbatical leave to look after critical family matters.
- 43% of women on board with 38% women in top management and a woman CEO at the helm.
- Child Development Centre in PLUS compound with 10 Early Childhood Environment (ECE) qualified teachers and 76 children, with classroom environment assessed using ECE rating scale.
“The Life at Work Award highlights best practices to encourage more employers to promote work-life integration and parent-friendly working environment.
This is with the aim to increase the participation of women in the workforce and to promote a diverse and inclusive working environment.
I hope their best practices will enable you to make great recommendations to your own organisations on striking work-life balance.” – Datuk Seri Rohani Abdul Karim Women, Family and Community Development Minister