Peter Reidy, Chief Executive, Fletcher Construction

by | Mar 11, 2022

This year’s IWD theme is #BreakTheBias – what have you found useful to break down conscious and unconscious bias in your organisation?

  • We’ve run workplace forums to encourage conversations and reflections about the challenges women face in our workplace and how we can attract and retain more women in our business. I think this has been valuable in supporting a change in mindsets.
  • The celebration of diversity in our workplace through profiles and stories and a structured recruitment process are very important.
  • Visibility of women in leadership roles is another area we are actively pursuing with initiatives like our recently launched Women to Leadership group mentoring programme.

What progress have you seen in the NZ infrastructure industry over the last year to increase diversity and inclusivity?

  • More and more businesses are driving diversity targets in their business. In our business for example we had a 50/50% split in our in our Intern Cohort and in our Graduate Cohort this year we have a 40% female/60% male split. I’m pleased to say that we are attracting more females to our business.
  • We are also seeing more visible celebration of female talent across the industry – NAWIC etc and businesses actively promoting opportunities for females.

What diversity and inclusion improvements would you like to see in the NZ infrastructure industry by this time next year?

  • I’d like to see more young women joining the industry from school and this is an area we are focussing on within Fletcher Construction through our Early in Career programmes.
  • Companies also working to close the gap where pay inequities exist.

How do you think we can attract more women to the NZ infrastructure sector?

  • Building more supportive workplaces culturally and in areas such as site facilities and PPE specifically designed for females.
  • Widespread pay parity and flexible work hours are also important to help make the industry more attractive and support retention in our industry.
  • In our business right now we’re particularly focused on
    • Connecting with schools and other learning institutions to build the profile of the industry and the opportunities for women in our industry
    • Recruitment practices
    • Career development opportunities across the industry with a real focus at the Executive level on how we support and promote our female talent
    • Parental leave policies which support women and men

How is your organisation celebrating IWD?

  • We will be profiling several of our women on internal channels as well as social media.
  • All staff have been invited to a webinar with Harold Hillman who is a well-known speaker on diversity and inclusion and will be discussing ‘Mitigating unconscious gender bias in the workplace’.