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Diverse and inclusive workplaces are essential to driving employee commitment

Alison O’Connor, Arriva Group’s Chief People Officer, tells Intelligent Transport about the workforce challenges that companies face across the transport industry and shares her thoughts on the importance of diversity and inclusion in attracting new people to choose public transport as a career, which ultimately benefits society, individuals and businesses.

Diverse and inclusive workplaces are essential to driving employee commitment

The modern workplace has evolved faster in recent years than at any other time in our history – no business has been immune to change. The global pandemic fundamentally impacted the way that we work and operate – never in our living memory has there been such a phenomenon, re-shaping employment and changing the perceptions of global workforces.

Never in our living memory has there been such a phenomenon, re-shaping employment and changing the perceptions of global workforces”

The economic and political landscape, further fuelled by COVID-19 and the war in Ukraine, have impacted the way that we consume, the way that our supply chains deliver and the cost of commodities like energy. We’ve also seen ongoing global inflation and related wage increases. This, combined with well-known societal issues like ageing workforces, recruitment challenges and people choosing to leave traditional workplaces, mean that all businesses find themselves with a formidable mix of pressures that are expected to affect us for years to come.

In response to all of this, the expectations of the workforce have changed rapidly. We need to understand and take stock of this shift so that we can embrace change and attract and retain wider talent pools and build a more resilient business for the future that reflects the communities that we serve.

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