Snapdeal - Celebrating diversity at the workplace
The scope for creativity & innovation depends on diversity of age, gender, abilities, cultures etc. in the workplace
Celebrating differences and not getting entangled in divergent opinions leads to the creation of a truly diverse workplace – an essential element for the success of any business organization. Today, Snapdeal has been relentlessly trying to build a culture that fosters inclusiveness and promotes diversity. The focus has been to create a foundation of inclusivity and a landscape for diverse thinkers to work together and create brilliant experiences for buyers and sellers in India’s digital commerce ecosystem.
Diversity integral to creativity and innovation
Internal innovation and business growth were found to be the key metrics that needed improvement. The scope for creativity and innovation depended on diversity of age, gender, abilities, cultures etc. in the workplace. Without diversity in the workplace, the team’s performance was likely to stagnate and become average as ideas would cease to be out of the box. Therefore, Snapdeal sought to look at diversity as a prerequisite element for success and not just a “nice to have” attribute that can be associated with the brand.
Putting the framework for diversity in place
Initially Snapdeal considered two separate diversity programs; one, increase female employees through focused recruitment, and also create opportunities for people with disabilities as these were found to be the segments that needed attention. Second, focus on experience as a key factor and build teams based on fresh minds and people with experience as this could be a way to build a diverse team without overlooking gender and other factors. However, since diversity of all types is crucial for success, the company decided to create a mixed approach wherein all essential diversity elements were to be focused upon. Snapdeal therefore worked towards hiring people from diverse backgrounds, thinking, traits, gender and experiences who filled the gaps identified in the teams in terms of diversity. At the same time, the company also ensured that it did not overlook gender based issues which is still a major improvement area.
To bring all diversity initiatives together and make it a success, Snapdeal has undertaken many special diversity initiatives. ‘Advitya’, a diversity sensitization initiative, was put in place in order to create awareness about what diversity truly means and why it needs to be embraced. The company tried to spread awareness on inclusiveness by introducing various campaigns. Diversity sensitization session and a Reasonable Accommodation Program was planned on how to create a diversity affirmative and inclusive workplace were held for all managers in the organization. Further, Snapdeal also created ‘women returnee ship’ program, which helps talented women ease back into careers after a sabbatical. Apart from these initiatives, Employee Parental Care program was launched which provided extended maternity and paternity leaves. The company also ensures inclusion of people with disabilities while hiring.
Ever since the diversity initiative at Snapdeal has been put to place, the company has grown exponentially and has established itself as an Equal Opportunity Employer. Employees at Snapdeal today represent different cultural backgrounds, gender, age groups, experiences, knowledge and perspectives. The workplace has been found to be creative, innovative and driven to succeed and internal innovation has gone up a notch because of the presence of workplace diversity. The philosophy to create an unparalleled experience for buyers and sellers in the digital commerce ecosystem has also got an incredible boost after the diversity based initiatives started showing positive impact.
Capturing learnings and challenges
Apart from the existing initiatives focused on women and differently-abled people, Snapdeal is also looking to launch campaigns that involve technology and social media tools to reach out to the masses regarding need for diversity in the workplace. Widespread awareness about these measures will bring substantial changes in terms of making the hiring process inclusive and build a culture that focuses on celebrating diversity.