Our diversity story at Nuance entered a new chapter this month when we took our first step with the European Union (EU) Platform of Diversity Charters in our EMEA region. We signed the charter in Ireland, where our international headquarters is located, along with six other organisations. While our engagement with diversity and inclusion in Nuance is well established, we felt engaging internationally with the charters was the next natural step.
Over a decade ago, the EU platform of Diversity Charters was established by the EU commission with the aim of fostering a conversation around diversity and inclusion in organisations of all shapes and sizes in the EU member states. This complimented the long-standing philosophy of the EU Commission: to foster and promote an inclusive society with diversity and inclusion at its core. By signing Diversity Charters and participating in their activities, we commit to create and maintain an inclusive work environment for our employees, regardless of gender, ethnicity, religion, age, disability, or sexual orientation.
The message across all signatories and speakers at the event was clear: diversity and inclusion is a personal journey, and we must be brave and continue to push the dial. In fact, Minister for Justice Helen McEntee, who made history in 2020 as the first female women of office in Ireland to take Maternity Leave, put it best when she said we should not be afraid of being “A first that happens.” To paraphrase the Irish 20×20 initiative around women’s participation in sport, “you can’t be what you can’t see”.
We are privileged in Nuance Ireland to have a strong co-site leadership between Caroline and Fergus, Vice Presidents in their respective areas with an international remit. They both embody and instill a message of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) across their teams in their everyday work. Here’s what Caroline and Fergus said when I asked them what diversity and inclusion means to them:
“At Nuance, our culture is built on our commitment to each other, our communities, and the world. Our differences both define and unite us. What I love about Nuance is that we are committed to putting diversity, inclusion, and equity at the core of our business activities and creating a culture and environment where our employees can bring their authentic and whole selves to work.” – Caroline, VP Finance, International
“I was really privileged to be part of the Diversity Charter Ireland presentation, and to see Nuance take lead on diversity in Europe. There was great participation from our employees in Dublin – their attendance also demonstrates how important this is to them and how signing this charter has been embraced by the team. This commitment coupled with our employee’s strong engagement show that diversity is a top priority for our organization.” -Fergus, Vice President, EMEA Delivery
When I consider all the great strides we have made on our own inclusion and diversity journey at Nuance, it is with excitement that we take this leap in our diversity story. Our employee-led resource groups – “Nuance Networks” – provide an avenue for our employees to engage with an area of diversity that they are passionate about. We offer virtual learning opportunities from both internal sources and external speakers on diversity topics that educate employees at all levels of the organization. Our Talent Acquisition team also focuses on recruitment methods to promote a diverse candidate pool and our policies continue to evolve to take into consideration the needs of our population.
For us in Nuance, taking this next step means we are enhancing our diversity, equity, and inclusion conversations globally, with a deeper engagement in the European context within our Nuance Networks and our organization. While this is not a new conversation for us, nonetheless, it will provide us an avenue to understand thought leadership on DEI initiatives through a European lens and ensure another layer of accountability in tracking our progress.