One of the ambitions of the Workplace Pride’s five ‘Communities’ is to strengthen co-operation and networking in each area of interest. For Tech@WorkplacePride this covers the Tech Industries in the broadest sense of the term and includes the additional goal of strengthening the community by exchanging knowledge about D&I.
One way that Tech@WorkplacePride facilitates this exchange is to organise several activities per year together with Workplace Pride’s member organisations. As a great example, Tech@WorkplacePride, along with 25 participants from amongst the Foundation’s members, visited Maersk at their Rotterdam Harbour facilities last November. With their head office in Copenhagen, Maersk is the global integrator of container logistics and has been a Workplace Pride member since 2021.
The Tech@WorkplacePride delegation was treated to a presentation by Wallace Wang from Maersk about their D&I policies and achievements, and of course about their eye-catching rainbow containers.
In the presentation, Wang pointed out that Maersk’s policy is to “collaborate, not compete, on diversity” with other companies. They strike collaborations with companies such as Puma, one of their customers, to work together on their D&I policies.
According to Wang, respect for diversity is a core value at Maersk, and it is a basic responsibility not to discriminate against any of their employees. Discrimination bars people from living up to their full potential, creates inequality and less stable and prosperous societies.
Maersk also believes in diversity of thought to continue to improve and develop their business. Facilitating a culture where everyone feels comfortable, respected and fairly treated which will in the end not only affect Maersk but also all of their stakeholders and partners.
Proof of this cooperation can be seen in the picture below of the Maersk D&I team, where two of the Maersk D&I team wear a blue Puma sneakers, with the logo of Maersk imprinted at the back.
Following the presentation and lunch, the group had an impressive bus tour to view the automated cargo off and onloading of the containers in the harbour as well as one of the biggest cargo vessels in the world. Impressively only the first few meters of the onloading is done by hand nowadays. The rest of the process, including driving electric wagons (AGV: automated guided vehicles) that move the containers around on the dock, is fully autonomous and sustainably electric.
The bus tour concluded with a presentation at the facility about the logistic processes of Maersk.
During the Q&A afterwards it got even more interesting, when the group began discussing the D&I policies on the work floor among production-floor employees. Obviously, Maersk is a worldwide company working with all nationalities which sometimes makes it challenging when it comes to inclusion. While physical health and safety are already at the core of Maersk’s culture, there is still room to grow on the social safety and diversity aspect. On this last point, it was positive sign that this group of 25 LGBTIQ+ people made their way through the facility as it enabled the D&I group of Maersk to make a connection there as well.
Participants from Tech@WorkplacePride included representatives from Workplace Pride members ARCADIS, ASML, IBM, Saxion, TU Delft and the Dutch Research Council (NWO) and they were very grateful to Maersk for their hospitality.
Tech@WorkplacePride’s ambition in 2023 is to undertake more company visits and they will start with one at Delft University of Technology in February. Even visits outside the Netherlands are possible so members of Workplace Pride who are interested to host such an event, or who have any questions can contact the group at firstname.lastname@example.org.