We strive to provide a truly inclusive workplace where everyone is valued and treated with respect without discriminsation or bias. By enabling a truly inclusive culture, we are more likely to attract, retain and motivate high performing team members from the widest possible pool of available talent. Inclusive and diverse teams are better able to innovate, solve problems and make better decisions, ultimately leading to improved financial performance.
We believe that building a better tomorrow for our team means demonstrating our care, celebrating diversity, creating a great place for our teams to work and paving their way to a brighter future. It means letting people be their best self regardless of their gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, marital or family status, age, race, ethnicity, religion or faith, ability or socio-economic background.
Together, with over 200,000 team members across the Woolworths Group, we are focused on celebrating diversity in all its forms to create a vibrant and inclusive place to work; where everyone can bring their whole selves to work and know they belong.
Our team represents many different cultures, bringing diversity of experience, thought and ideas to work with us everyday. We celebrate cultural days of significance, to help our team explore and experience other cultures.
In an effort to reflect the culturally diverse communities we serve, Woolworths in partnership with Community Corporate Pty Ltd has successfully provided employment opportunities for over 200 refugees, from over 20 different cultural backgrounds. Refugees have been offered roles in Supermarkets, Metros and Customer Fulfillment Centres since the employment program’s inception in 2016.
We’re very proud to be the first Australian company to join the Tent Partnership for Refugees - a global network committed to improving the livelihoods of refugees by integrating them into core business operations.
As the nation’s largest private employer, we want to help refugees build new, secure and fulfilling lives in Australia. We also believe our teams should reflect the culturally diverse communities we serve.
We have a deep respect for our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander team members, customers and all of those who live in the communities we serve. We firmly believe they should have a voice in decisions that affect them. That’s why we support the Uluru Statement from the Heart, and the recommendations of the Referendum Council. A First Nations voice to Parliament enshrined in our Constitution and a Makarrata Commission to oversee agreement‑making and truth‑telling are critical steps toward reconciliation. They allow First Nations people to claim their rightful place in our nation and enable us to move forward together.
Almost 5,000 of our team members are Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. We are deeply committed to listening, learning and growing as part of our reconciliation journey. Across Woolworths Group, we define reconciliation as actions that create healing from past and current injustices endured by our First Nations peoples.
Since the launch of our second Innovate‑Level Reconciliation Action Plan on 5 July 2019, we have made progress on our commitment to take concrete actions to build strong and lasting relationships, respect and understanding between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and non‑Indigenous Australia. This includes delivering 87 actions from July 2019 to July 2021. We are consolidating our learnings and building our cultural intelligence as we work towards creating even bigger and more meaningful commitments in our next RAP.
However we recognise that there is much more we can do, and we are committed to consult, listen and work with others towards more meaningful, equitable relationships built on a foundation of respect. Our vision for reconciliation is a better future in which all Australians have an equal voice and access to opportunities for prosperity.
Our Resourcing the Future Employment Program is a partnership between us, the Australian Federal Government and Diversity Dimensions to address and overcome the barriers to employment opportunities in our recruitment processes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians and increase the number of First Nations team members joining the Woolworths Group.
Since the program’s inception in 2015, we have offered employment to over 3,300 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander job seekers, with many of these roles offered in regional or remote areas. Our team members undertake cultural training before the program commences, and program participants have access to a mentor to support them throughout the program.
In 2021 we were awarded Gold Tier status for LGBTQ+ workplace inclusion in the Australian LGBTQ Inclusion Awards for the fourth consecutive year. The Australian Workplace Equality Index (AWEI) is the definitive national benchmark on LGBTQ+ workplace inclusion, driving best practice and setting a benchmark for Australian employers across all sectors. It conducts the only national survey of employees across companies to gauge the overall impact of inclusion initiatives on organisational culture.
Achieving Gold Tier status for four consecutive years means we are now Platinum Qualifier employers and are set to embark on an AWEI Platinum Project. This project will run for two years and our goal is to be awarded Platinum Tier employer status upon its completion.
Two of our team members were also recognised for their individual contribution to inclusion, our Executive Sponsor of Proud at Woolworths Group Guy Brent who won the Executive Leadership Award, and our Proud Co-chair Nic Hennessy MBA who received the Sapphire Inspire Award for LGBTQ+ Women.
In New Zealand, Countdown continues to support our rainbow team and communities and has been recognised with Rainbow Tick accreditation for three years running.
In 2018, Woolworths Group introduced our Gender Affirmation Policy and supporting tools. By recognising the complexity and challenges team members may face during their journey, and improving the support we provide, we seek to show real care, and positively impact team member experience, across the Group. On the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, Interphobia and Transphobia 2021, we announced the incorporation of a paid leave component into our existing policy. Team members will receive up to two weeks’ paid, and two weeks’ unpaid leave, to support them as they take the necessary steps to affirm their gender, a first for Australian and New Zealand retailers.
We are proud to be the first Australian food retailer granted the Employer of Choice for Gender Equality citation from the Workplace Gender Equality Agency. The citation is designed to encourage, recognise and promote active commitment to achieving gender equity in Australian workplaces.
We strongly believe in equal pay for equal work. Our Pay Parity Review program compares salaries of like‑for‑like roles of our team members across the Woolworths Group, at all levels. This continuing work helps identify gender pay gaps between our male and female team members by grouping our positions and career streams, while accounting for team member movements that may result in fluctuations. Our last review resulted in a statistically insignificant less than 1% gap which we aim to continue to improve on.