Harnessing diversity at the Royal Mail is "one hell of a
challenge", but essential for the survival of the business, according to
the company’s diversity director.
Satya Kartara, director of diversity and inclusion at Royal Mail, said that
when she joined the company less than a year ago, she faced a business with
perfect systems and strategies, but no culture of challenging unacceptable
"Diversity is a moral and ethical issue, but it also impacts on the
bottom line," she said. "We were losing £30m through absence,
turnover and low productivity."
Presently, 85 per cent of staff at the Royal Mail are men, and women are
often in low administrative positions. Ethnic minorities represent only 10 per
cent of the workforce.
To combat this, the postal company has reviewed all its HR procedures,
invested in extra training for all line managers, provided an employee helpline
and created a board of 10 diversity champions, made up of senior managers, to
drive change from the top.
"It is critical to our plans that there is visible leadership from the
top," said Kartara. "This will combat the present macho environment.
There is no glass ceiling, just a dense layer of men."