In 2020, Subashini Nadarajah and Tasha Gilroy were appointed executive global co-directors of diversity, equity and inclusion at VMLY&R, tasked with maintaining and expanding the agency's global DE&I practice.
Under their leadership, the DE&I practice more than doubled in size by January 2021, and by the end of December 2021, there was an official global team of nine members across three continents. Through a wide range of initiatives and programming, this team has nurtured a happier, healthier and more motivated workforce that supports the multifaceted identities of employees and their perspectives and experiences.
The agency’s vision for an inclusive workplace is underpinned by five guiding principles. These are recruitment (considering high potential, non-traditional talent); education (broadening employee and client perspectives through increased diversity and education); authenticity; culture (fostering and sustaining a collaborative work environment) and humanity (caring beyond one’s personal or familial frame of reference to consider, understand and embrace the goals, achievements and challenges that others face).
VMLY&R developed additional Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) – first introduced in 2020, these aim to help employees discover commonalities and embrace differences. In 2021, the agency launched two further ERGs: Embrace (Working Parent and Caregiver) and Wellbeing (Employee Holistic Health). The agency has hosted more than 40 ERG-led events and activations in 2021 and it is investing in developing further programming and activations that empower employees of diverse identities to use their voices to advocate for themselves and their peers.
Judges said the agency demonstrated "exceptional commitment to a critical business imperative".
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