OVO Belonging: the beginning of something great
30 June 2021 | Alessandro Storer
Today is a very special day for me and for the OVO community. Today is the day we renew our public commitment to building a truly diverse community and an inclusive culture where everyone can thrive because they are valued, respected and supported in the right way: we call it OVO Belonging.
I think at OVO we always instinctively “felt” that belonging was crucial to our mission. It was already captured in Plan Zero back in September 2019 as an essential ingredient to build the best place to work by 2030. But I don’t think until now we had a fully formed understanding of how to achieve this ambition.
Our inaugural Belonging Report does just that: it sets a clear vision for Belonging, and a plan to get us there. It also contains our current diversity and inclusion data, what steps we took in 2020 and our priorities for 2021/22. We’ll be publishing it every year, holding ourselves accountable for the progress we’re making.
I encourage you to read the full report to get a real sense of what we are trying to achieve.
But, just to give you the headlines:
- Belonging is vital to achieving our mission to make zero carbon living possible: We can only succeed if our culture is inclusive, our team truly diverse, and if everyone is empowered to be at their best.
- Our diversity data shows we’ve still got a long way to go to be fully representative of the communities we are here to serve. But we’re taking positive steps to building a diverse movement and culture of belonging at OVO. Building on our Powerful Women Pledge to reach at least 40% female representation in leadership and 25% in tech roles by 2025.
- We have started to build the infrastructure that will allow us to achieve our belonging ambitions. We launched 8 amazing Networks to help us power our progress, and a full programme of education and training to make sure we are as inclusive as possible in everything we do, from how we recruit, to how we ensure everyone has equal access to career opportunities. And we have appointed our GC Sanjay Verma as senior sponsor for Race & Ethnicity, and set ambitious targets as part of the Race at Work charter, including 25% of all new hires to be from an ethnic minority background.
We know that ultimately we will only succeed if every single one of us will play their part. This is not someone else's problems to fix: it’s not just Talent Acquisition’s responsibility to hire diverse talent. And it’s not just the People Team who need to create an inclusive culture.
Every single one of us has to choose to be consciously inclusive and take every opportunity to make OVO a place where we all truly belong.
To get there we need to continue this conversation, we must educate ourselves and feel able to challenge each other without fear, so that we can build something great, together.