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Why inclusion and diversity is good for business

Corporate inclusion and diversity has proven to be good for employees, good for customers, and good for business. Chief Diversity Officer, Brian Tippens, shares how increasing transparency and accountability has accelerated a cultural transition within the technology industry.  Guest blog post by Brian Tippens, Chief DIversity Officer, HPE

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At no time in history has more attention been paid to the lack of diversity in the technology industry. An increasing demand for transparency from customers, stakeholders, and employees alike, has led to growing pressure to diversify a predominantly white, Asian, and male workforce. New companies are mobilizing to take a stand on social issues, while others with a strong history of human rights are aiming to increase accountability within management to foster inclusion among their teams. Just last year, HPE made a deliberate choice to retitle our team “Inclusion and Diversity”, highlighting our focus on broadening our inclusive culture to ensure every employee is able to bring their whole self to work each and every day.

I’m energized to see increasing interest from our customers and marketplace, who want to do business with a company that aligns with their values. As a global company with customers that span the world, we recognize our responsibility to not only drive accountability within our own operations but also through our supply chain—supporting minority-owned businesses to create an inclusive supply chain that can meet the needs of our customers.

An inclusive culture allows our global workforce to thrive by celebrating differences, promoting collaboration, and ultimately inspiring innovation

 We are embracing inclusion and diversity not only as a force for good but as a matter of business competitiveness. Research from Harvard Business Review and McKinsey suggest that an inclusive business doesn’t just help us meet the needs of our customers, but leads to increased employee performance and greater financial returns. An inclusive culture allows our global workforce to thrive by celebrating differences, promoting collaboration, and ultimately inspiring innovation.

By bringing an engaged group of people together with different skills, backgrounds and personal experiences our Employee Resource Groups (ERGs), help to build an even more inclusive culture and focus on how inclusion and diversity support our bottom line. With over 120 chapters across 30 countries, these employee-led communities provide a networking ecosystem focused on leadership & career development, personal growth, coaching, and mentoring—all while creating business value. The HPE Women's Network, for example, aims to make HPE the #1 technology company for women to achieve success, build a career, and make an impact on the world.

The progress the industry has made in recent years is inspiring, but we still face significant challenges. Today, less than 5 percent of the tech workforce is Hispanic or Black, while women make up less than 30 percent of technical roles in the IT industry. This is a reality we are working to reverse. 

We believe in the unique potential of technology to solve some of technology’s biggest issues

At HPE, we believe in the unique potential of technology to solve some of technology’s biggest issues. This year, HPE, our Women’s Innovation Council, YWCA Silicon Valley, and a number of university partners have launched Curated PathwaysTM, an IT solution developed to help young women and minorities navigate their journey to a career in STEM. I’m humbled by employee-led initiatives like this, which go beyond funding to provide volunteer opportunities for our employees to engage in tackling these complex challenges. Based on the results of the Silicon Valley pilot, we are eager to make the platform available to minorities and women students across the country. 

I’m enthusiastic about the opportunities that lie ahead to mobilize the technology industry to build the jobs and workplaces of the future, and encourage my colleagues to ask themselves how they can be enablers of a more inclusive world.

I recently had the pleasure of speaking to Tony Prophet, Chief Equality Officer at Salesforce, about his new role and unique focus. Listen to our HPE Gives podcast to learn more about how we’re driving inclusion and diversity within and beyond our four walls.


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Brian Tippens is Vice President, Chief Diversity Officer at Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) and is responsible for providing vison, leadership, management, and strategic planning in championing HPE’s innovative culture that supports diversity, equity and inclusion.  He works closely with HPE’s worldwide business leaders guiding the efforts to conceptualize, assess and cultivate diversity as a business practice and educational resources.

About the Author

LPEditor

Applying the innovation engine of HPE to sustainably meet the technology demands of the future. Follow us: @HPE_LivingProg

Comments

Good to see a company not only stating their values but operating in alignment with them. So many these days unfortunately promise lots and deliver little. We're lucky enough to work with both colleagues and customers daily from all corners of the globe. Nice blog post!

A future where equality, inclusion, and diversity are the norm is within reach. A simple way to accelerate progress is to personally commit to act. I'm committing to be a better ally. Post a comment below and let's hear about the action you're committing to take.

Esabela

Glad and Proud to work for HPE. Thank You Brian for your continue involvment to create a better work enviroment and also a better world for everyone. 

Ramkumar Yaragarla

Hi,

Nice article. When a group of people from diverse backgrounds come together and interact they bring with them different perspectives and thought processes. These different perspectives and thoughts sow the seeds for innovation and creativity.

I agree with you when you said inclusive culture promotes collaboration and innovation and also embraces differences within ourselves. There may be challenges in the begining in acknowledging these differences, but in due course of time as we begin to search for alternative solutions, we make way for working together for solving our common problems and achieving our overarching goals. Such inclusiveness enhances organisational competitiveness as well.

Ideas and solutions to problems are all around us. We just need to be open enough to embrace the differences and perhaps we might hit upon a new angle or perspective for a long standing challenge which we as a homegenous group might not have thought before. Diversity makes this happen.

It was nice reading through your article. I enjoyed it. Thank you.
Cheers, Ramkumar

Quantise Rodgers

Brian Tippens, Chief Diversity Officer with Hewlett Packard Enterprises (HPE), Appointed as Head of Advisory Board for Omnikal Immediate Release | Southport, CT |

Southport, CT: OMNIKAL.COM, the Nation’s largest inclusive business organization built to empower all entrepreneurs and corporations announced the formation of the OMNIKAL Advisory Board and the selection of Brian Tippens, Chief Diversity Officer, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) as it’s first chairperson. OMNIKAL (formerly DiversityBusiness.com) was launched in 1999 to serve the diversity business community. The organization’s members now include most Fortune 500 companies and over 2.5 million entrepreneurs.

“The formation of the OMNIKAL advisory board will bring an extended vision for the development of diversity and inclusion initiatives and strategies ” said Kenton Clarke, Chief Executive Officer at OMNIKAL. “It allows us to bring together thought leadership from some of the nation’s top companies who see a new forward for gaining market share among its customers, developing a more diverse and inclusive workforce and creating wealth for all communities.”

“Hewlett Packard Enterprise’s commitment to supporting a diversity owned company (OMNIKAL) in digitizing the advancement of entrepreneurship speaks well for both HPE and the entire tech industry. There are many positive things happening with diversity in the tech industry and we value these commitments. We also encourage other companies to follow this model,”stated Clarke.

About OMNIKAL

OMNIKAL was founded in 1999. Now the Nation’s largest inclusive business organization, OMNIKAL promotes entrepreneurship and the belief that entrepreneurs create real world solutions to today’s business and economic challenges. By fostering deeper and broader collaboration between business owners and entrepreneurial support organizations, the OMNIKAL network fuels healthier ecosystems through job creation, professional development and drives innovation resulting in strong economic growth for all communities.