Differences wanted: EY hails diversity as critical to global success

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(Toronto, 19 February 2013) As businesses seek growth — locally and worldwide — they must shore up their workforces with the diverse perspectives they need to challenge outdated ideas, and adapt to thrive in new environments, says EY, just named one of Canada’s 2013 Best Diversity Employers.

A six-time winner since the award’s inception, EY continues to use its leading position to advocate for the tangible benefits of embedding diversity, inclusiveness and human-equity values in business strategy.

“We’ve learned that by integrating these values into our core processes — including promotions, recruitment, succession planning, client service, and business development initiatives — we can better attract, retain and empower top talent at every level,” says Steve Shea, Managing Partner, People at EY. “If organizations can do these things and remain globally united under a single mission, they’ll gain a distinct competitive advantage on a global scale.”

But few organizations are doing this well so far, and that’s something many are eager to improve — according to the executives polled for the EY survey, Growing pains: Companies in rapid-growth markets face talent challenges as they expand.

Forty-two per cent of the executives said talent management is the second most challenging function to handle in a global economy — citing management teams’ lack of awareness of local cultures and global markets as major barriers to success.

And with a mere 21% of all Growing pains respondents reporting confidence in their company's ability to manage talent effectively across all markets, it’s clear organizations need to adjust to capitalize on the globalization promise.

“Diversity — in many varieties — as a business strategy is one piece of the puzzle,” says Fiona Macfarlane, Chief Inclusiveness Officer at EY. “We’re using our success to help our clients and others capitalize on the potential. If more organizations in Canada can infuse their business strategies with these values, the Canadian business environment will become stronger as a result.”

About Canada’s Best Diversity Employers

Canada's Best Diversity Employers recognizes employers across Canada that have exceptional workplace diversity and inclusiveness programs, examining a range of diversity initiatives. Winners are determined based on employer applications. More than 3,250 employers across Canada started the application process for this year's competition, which was reduced to a short-listed group of employers with noteworthy and interesting diversity initiatives. Each short-listed candidate's programs were reviewed to determine how they compared to those of other employers in the same field. The finalists chosen represent the diversity leaders in their industries and regions of Canada.

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About EY

EY is a global leader in assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services. Worldwide, our 167,000 people are united by our shared values and an unwavering commitment to quality. We make a difference by helping our people, our clients and our wider communities achieve their potential.