To include those different perspectives, we work on establishing a workforce that is diverse in terms of, for example, gender, age, experience and background. We have more than 800 highly qualified people of all ages, representing about forty different nationalities.
But diversity and inclusion are about more than just numbers. Differences between people such as race, nationality, ethnicity, gender, age, religion, different competencies, sexual orientation, education, personality, skills and experience (in other words, diversity) can be stated as statistics. Inclusion, by contrast, is about how we at Deltares embrace those differences. How we work together to establish a collaborative, inspiring and respectful working environment that encourages all employees to get on board, contribute and feel they belong.
Creating an inclusive organisation is a never-ending journey
Annemieke Nijhof, General Director of Deltares
It is a journey that we identified as a priority in our Strategic Agenda 2022-2025. Every day we take steps to become a fully diverse and inclusive organisation:
- We recognise that every employee matters. Everyone contributes knowledge, a unique perspective and a unique personality. Our ambition is for every employee to feel recognised and valued, and for each employee to have the opportunity to develop and apply their knowledge, talents and skills in a socially safe working environment.
- Our own organisational culture is the focus of constant attention and sensitivity. We use reflection and dialogue about our explicit and implicit values, customs and habits, rules and taboos as tools to ensure that we are appreciated even more positively as an employer.
- We encourage inclusive behaviour by:
- working on a socially safe working environment;
- actively listening in order to understand each other and be aware of preconceived ideas;
- encouraging everyone to participate, voice their opinions and speak out;
- appreciating, embracing and learning from the differences between us.
- We see gender equality as an important component of the broader theme of diversity & inclusion and of our ambition to strengthen the Deltares inclusive culture. All these things can be seen in the Gender Equality Plan.
- Our aim is to maximise the diverse make-up of teams for projects and consultancy, allowing us to create better relationships with our partners, clients and stakeholders. Together, we contribute more successfully to a sustainable impact on society.
An important step for the establishment of a more inclusive culture is the creation of an increased awareness of the biases that simply everyone has.
Mirjam Buurmeijer (HR manager)
To boost the focus on Diversity & Inclusion at Deltares, we formed a change team to elaborate the concepts of inclusion and diversity at Deltares and to engage in concrete action.
The focus areas are:
- Recruitment and onboarding
- Dialogue and leadership
- Monitoring and evaluation
- Communication and events