L’Oréal was a winner of Recalibrate, Gender Equity Awards in Australia. Whilst many would know them as the leading beauty company in the world, not as many would appreciate them as leaders in Gender equity. When asked what they were doing differently it all came down to their Ethical Principles of integrity, respect, courage and transparency that serve as their compass for acting ethically day-to-day.
In 2021, L’Oréal’s new CEO, Nicolas Hieronimus, hosted his first ever Ethics Day livestream alongside Jean-Christophe Sautory, Chief Ethics, Risk & Compliance Officer. The 100% digital event—simultaneously interpreted into English, French, Mandarin and Spanish—fosters sincere and transparent discussion with employees worldwide. Employees were able to speak directly to members of the Group’s Executive Committee and Country Managers to ask them questions about L’Oréal’s ethics policy and how it applies to specific situations encountered at work, or to offer suggestions. An open forum Rodrigo Pizarro, CEO of L’Oréal Australia and New Zealand, still exercises locally with his employees throughout the year.

With over 8,000 questions submitted and nearly 40,000 connections worldwide, employee participation and engagement were particularly high in 2021. The event’s open-dialogue format consistently kindles enthusiasm. Thanks to instant chat and voting, employees were able to select the topics they felt were most important. A lot of questions were answered live. The 2021 edition bested previous years, with 77 ethics dialogue sessions organised across all entities, countries and Zones.

One of the results of this has been L’Oréal’s zero-tolerance policy towards moral harassment, sexual harassment, and discrimination.

“At L’Oréal, we are committed to Transparency. For this reason, we pledge to share regular updates on the voices of our employees and highlight why speaking up on all matters of ethical concerns is important to allow us to progress together.
We are a committed and responsible company, exercising our leadership based on our demanding Ethical Principles and we aim to be an exemplary and inclusive employer. That is why we are determined to address the concerns that we receive and proactively take the appropriate actions to reaffirm L’Oréal’s zero-tolerance policy towards all kinds of harassment and discrimination.” Paul Steer, Chief Human Relations Officer L’Oréal ANZ.

Another commitment has been the work to achieving pay equity for like for like roles. To ensure transparency L’Oréal uses the EDGE pay equity tool. Today they are sitting at 1.99% and are well on their way to it being zero.

As well as pay equity they go out of their way to support their team as parents. They are committed to a flexible work culture based around the Simplicity behaviours of cooperation, trust, empowerment, fairness, transparency and respect. When employees approach them about a flexible work arrangement our people managers first ask why not? Instead of why?

Hayley Sigmund, Market Director for L’Oreal Dermalogical Beauty in New Zealand works part time with flexibility, she says that “when I was planning my return to work from maternity leave one of the first things that I discussed with my manager was how I could manage transition back to work so that my daughter had the time to adjust. I started with 2 days and over a period of about 6 weeks transitioned up to 4 days which was to be in place until I was ready to discuss increasing to 5. Now over 3 years later I’m still working 4 days but have adjusted arrangement to be a 90% role v 80% when I first started the transition to be more reflective of the current situation. While it can sometimes be a challenge for the most part this arrangement works for me, so I haven’t seen a strong enough reason to change it.
I have huge appreciation for the fact that, even though I’ve worked with 3 different managers over this time, they have all been completely supportive of this way of working and never challenged or pressured me to change it. In fact, they’ve supported me holding on to this balance and make the most of the time with my daughter while she’s young.”

This year they have continued to make improvements to stay leaders in Gender equality. They have removed the distinction between primary and secondary carers; for example, regardless of whether you are a mum or dad, you have the same entitlement to leave. This has resulted in an increased uptake by many of the fathers across the business. Another key update has been to include 14 weeks paid parental any employees who suffers the devastating loss of a still birth.

They work hard at being transparent and certification with WGEA & EDGE enable them to do this. The EDGE international certification provides the systems and process to help corporates communicate their efforts and achievements around gender equality. Rodrigo Pizarro, CEO L’Oréal Australia, commented: “In the past five years we have prioritised gender equality consistently year after year, and we are very proud to be recognised by EDGE for the standard we set for ourselves in gender equality. Today gender equality is top of mind in everything we do at L’Oréal Australia to ensure we always provide equal access, equal opportunity and equal rewards”. So, it is no surprise that they were a winner at Recalibrate Gender Equity Awards for Australia.

PHOTO : L to R: Lisa, Sweeney,  Louise Corke – Senior Talent Acquisition Consultant and Joanne Nikolas – Payroll Controlling and Analytics

If you would like to learn more about the other finalists then click this link.