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Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Kia UK puts the focus on EDI for International Women’s Day

UK
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Automobile Magazine
Editor | News | United Kingdom

Kia UK continues to lead on equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) in the workplace with a host of employee activities, supporting International Women’s Day (IWD) on 8 March 2024 and the theme #InspireInclusion.

Kia UK launched a new Inclusion Plan at the start of 2023 to cover leadership, recruitment, talent and support for employees with a focus on EDI. Part of this plan includes a partnership with Moving Ahead, to deliver inclusive leadership training for all staff; to tackle gender stereotypes, call out discrimination and draw attention to bias, among its key focuses. Kia has further added to the Plan with a new Carer’s Policy that goes beyond The Carers Leave Act, which is to be legally introduced in April this year.

For IWD 2024, Kia UK invited guest speaker Beth Stallwood, Head of Programmes and Cultural Development at Moving Ahead, and an Organisational Culture Consultant, Facilitator and Coach, to speak to staff at its headquarters in Walton-On-Thames.

Beth focused on how to make an organisation better, not categorising people into boxes, get people talking to one another to learn their different barriers and make things more accessible and inclusive for all by, for example, extending work done that benefits one group to another group. A key takeaway was that many policies and staff services are good for all, even if they had originally been developed for or by women.

Paul Philpott, President and CEO of Kia UK, said: “We strongly believe that fostering an equal, diverse and inclusive working culture strengthens our business. Employees want to feel heard and know that they have a voice.

International Women’s Day may just be one day, but it highlights the important work going on every day to make our organisation even more inclusive. Today marks an excellent opportunity for the whole company to learn more and open discussions about our inclusive future.”

Thrive employee resource group
Kia’s women’s working group, formerly known as Strive, has now evolved to become an employee resource group (ERG) named Thrive. The change is designed to reflect progress made towards driving positive change, and a more diverse and flexible workplace. Thrive supports Kia’s Inclusion Plan and aims to offer a safe space for people to talk and come together, create change, generate new ideas and discuss current issues. Crucially, the work done by the Thrive ERG benefits all employees.

Automotive 30% Club
A founding member of the Automotive 30% Club, Kia UK increased its profile with Silver Membership in early 2024 to contribute to quarterly meetings discussing key topics and issues relating to EDI.

A great place to work
In July 2023, Kia UK was named one of the Best Workplaces™ for Women by Great Place To Work®, for providing an inclusive work environment for all and ensuring there is a positive and supportive environment for women too. Kia was officially accredited as a Great Place to Work-Certified™ organisation in May 2023.

EV9 is the 2024 Women’s Worldwide Car of the Year
Coinciding with International Women’s Day, the Kia EV9 has been declared the ‘World’s Best Car for 2024’ and ‘Supreme Winner’ at the 2024 Women’s Worldwide Car of the Year (WWCOTY) Awards. The accolade follows in the footsteps of the Kia Niro, which won ‘Supreme Winner’ at the same awards last year; itself following the Kia Sportage that earned the ‘Family SUV’ class win in 2022.

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