Date: 
Wednesday 17 September 2014

Race Discrimination Commissioner Dr Tim Soutphommasane and Parliamentary Secretary for Social Services with special responsibility for Multicultural Affairs and Settlement Services, Senator Concetta Fierravanti-Wells today launched a free online tool to help businesses enhance productivity through a culturally diverse workplace.

“Australians embrace cultural diversity, but there is still a long way to go in getting things right in the workplace,” Dr Soutphommasane said.

“Managing diversity is about Australian employers being leaders in a global economy.

“The Workplace Cultural Diversity Tool will help businesses improve their performance. It will help businesses in recruiting and retaining the best talent, and in creating a more welcoming workplace.”

The tool was developed in partnership with Diversity Council Australia and VicHealth.

Diversity Council Australia CEO Lisa Annese said the free tool will help organisations to measure themselves against international best practice and identify areas for improvement.

“The tool rates organisations on their current cultural diversity and guides them through the process of moving to best practice, tracking their progress over time,” Ms Annese said.

“As Australia becomes more culturally diverse, it is important that organisations have the right resources to effectively manage the opportunities this presents.”

PwC CEO Luke Sayers said he was looking forward to using the new online resource to help the firm pursue its diversity and inclusion agenda.

“We recognise the value a culturally diverse workforce brings – not just for our people, but for our clients as well. In a society as diverse as Australia, having a workforce that reflects that diversity is fundamental,” Mr Sayers said.

“We’ve set a target to increase the number of our partners from an Asian cultural background to 5 per cent by 2016, and this tool will be a valuable resource as we work towards that goal.”

For more information about the Workplace Cultural Diversity Tool visit http://culturaldiversity.humanrights.gov.au

Media contact: Angela Dorizas 02 9284 9891 or 0419 258 597