Driving Diversity: How to develop DEI policies that work

Driving Diversity: How to develop DEI policies that work

Angela Splinter

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) sometimes feel like a “check the box” exercise, which is why these initiatives can fall short as you try to establish a culture where employees can imagine themselves as key contributors.

For many trucking and logistics employers, just getting started with DEI is the hard part. The longer you wait to develop policies and practices, the more you risk missing out on finding top talent among underrepresented people and reaping the benefits of a more inclusive workplace.

This is why Driving Diversity is the theme of our annual Women with Drive Leadership Summit on June 2 in Toronto.

This year’s conference will examine what it means to hire, train, and retain a more representative workforce in trucking and logistics, with a special emphasis on DEI tools, strategies, and best practices.

Our morning panel includes DEI experts from academia, government, employers, and business who will share ideas and actions they have taken to increase diversity across the industry.

The afternoon features what has quickly become the most popular piece of the program, the Learning Highway, where delegates can participate in speed-learning on topics including:

  • Using social media and marketing to recruit a diverse workforce
  • Workforce planning through diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Canada Labour Code compliance
  • Using industry-specific wage subsidies to support recruiting a diverse workforce

The conference is also a place for HR professionals to network and learn from each other, and to access DEI resources they can take back and share with their own teams.

These resources include Recruiting and Retaining Diverse Communities: An Employer Roadmap. Produced in partnership with the Alberta Motor Transport Association, this guide identifies specific groups that are underrepresented in the industry and provide strategies that can help attract, recruit, and retain diverse talent.

THRC will introduce a suite of tools that HR professionals can use to create and implement effective DEI policies; manage hybrid and flexible workplaces; improve performance appraisals; develop workplace wellness programs; and create a compensation philosophy. Developed specifically for trucking and logistics employers, these resources will be available from the THRC website and provide templates and step-by-step support for HR teams.

DEI policies don’t exist as a “favour” to underrepresented groups. They’re intended to help employers establish and maintain a workplace that is welcoming, supportive, and draws strength from the knowledge and experiences that come from a diverse workforce.

Register and join us in Toronto on June 2 to learn more.

Marking a decade

By: Angela Splinter

May 4, 2021

This week marks my 10-year anniversary working in the trucking and logistics sector.

Always a keener and up for a challenge, I came here ready to make a difference.

Having worked in other industries doing the type of HR work I am doing now, I saw the opportunities that trucking and logistics present. The industry is an economic powerhouse with one of the country?s largest workforces. It also faces onerous and longstanding HR issues.

I was excited and enthusiastic to get to work.

But not for long. Unbeknownst to me at the time, I had a bit of a rocky road ahead, but not for the reasons you may think.

Yes, I was a young woman, ready to lead and get things done in one of the most male-dominated industries in the country. But what caused me strife were the organization?s significant financial burdens which I discovered during my first few weeks on the job.

In addition, just two months in I received notice that 95% of my operational funding would be cut within 12 months.

While an early exit certainly crossed my mind, I decided to give it five years.

What followed was me walking into an association board meeting feeling like the only woman in the room (I was in fact one of two at the time). For the record, that did not concern me. I had an organization to save, and I needed all hands to help me do that.

And that?s exactly what happened. Here I am, 10 years later reminiscing about the journey.

I am fortunate to have mentors, champions and sponsors who took the time to help me along the way. I will share a few:

  • David Bradley, the previous President and CEO of the Canadian Trucking Alliance. David and I frequently disagreed and sometimes argued. When I realized he was in fact like this with everyone, I reached out to David more often. When I began to observe him sometimes taking on my ideas and using some of my language, I knew he was getting it. David always took the time to let me talk things through, tell me what he thought I should do and then support me when I did my own thing.
  • Mike McCarron, Left Lane Associates and former partner at MSM Transportation. Now don?t fall out of your chair, folks. One of the first events I worked on with Mike had him picking me up at the airport with his daughter in tow. Mike?s family is a cottaging family like mine, and I found an instant connection. I often leaned on Mike for his industry insights, connections and, to be honest, when I just needed a good laugh.
  • John G. Smith, Newcom Media. Back before he was the editorial director at Newcom, publisher of Today?s Trucking and trucknews.com, John was a communications consultant, albeit one with loads of trucking industry experience. Let?s just say he taught me a thing or two and I always trusted his judgement . And there?s a theme: another cottager.

I?ve had the privilege of great team members at Trucking HR Canada. Some have come and gone over the years but each one was a part of the organization?s success. Today, I am proud of the progress we have made and that we can offer a compensation and benefits package that rivals the federal public service?our main competitor for talent in the Ottawa area.

I would be remiss if I did not mention my own rather large, personal bump along the way: my cancer diagnosis in the summer of 2017 was certainly a big one. I am grateful for the Board members who stepped up and did my job so I could make fighting cancer mine. I am in great health, three years into remission.

I also want to salute the women in this industry who inspire me every single day.

First, the other woman in the room at my first association meeting? She was Claudia Milicevic, head of Loadlink Technologies. I also want to mention Angelique Magi of Intact Insurance; Lorraine Card, former President of AMTA; Louise Yako, former BCTA President; Susan Ewart, President of the Saskatchewan Trucking Association; Joanne MacKenzie, Professional Truck Driver; Rebecka Freels, communications consultant; Vicki Stafford, Cavalier Transport; ?Kathy Koras from Newcom Media; Michelle Arseneau of GX Transport; and Rachel Arseneau of GX Transport; Louise McCalpine, Snowbird Transport; Vicki McKibbon from Armour Transport; Linda Young from Bison; Caroline Blais from Kriska Transport; Rosana Preston from Rosedale Transport; Heather Day, President of Day Transport; Stephanie Theede of Westcan Bulk Transport; Myrna Chartrand, Professional Truck Driver; Shelley Uvanille-Hesch, CEO of the Women?s Trucking Federation of Canada; Margaret Hogg, ambassador for everything trucking; Lisa Kelly, Professional Truck Driver; and believe me, the list goes on.

While I work to not see my gender as a barrier, I have met many along the way who have had different experiences. The women of this industry motivate me to do more, and I proudly blaze the trail with them.

Today, Trucking HR Canada is an industry leader in all regards. Thank you to everyone who has been a part of making that happen. I have missed some, I am sure, but you all know who you are, and you are all leaders.

Together, we have made a difference and I am so proud to be a part of it.

Four Key Takeaways from Women with Drive 2021

By: Katrina Pizzino

Trucking HR Canada?s 7th Annual Women with Drive Leadership Summit kept the international women?s day celebratory vibes of women, women leaders, and women in the industry going full speed. While the event was a little different – being the first time it was held virtually and globally, we still brought together over 200 women from the industry to connect and learn from one another.? It left delegates with the regular high dose of inspiration along with practical and insightful take-aways from a roster of formidable speakers.

The Right Honorable Micha?lle Jean, who served as Governor General of Canada from 2005 to 2010, and Halla T?masd?ttir, Icelandic businessperson and CEO of the B Team, left us with a plethora of insights.? The 2021 Women with Drive stage provided me with four key takeaways from our keynote speakers:

We are Change Makers

Micha?lle Jean trumpeted the efforts the trucking industry has put forward. She noted that we have been heralded as heroes during this time of pandemic, saying that it is time for the invisible to become visible.? She noted that front line workers and those in the trucking industry are finally getting the public attention that they deserve, claiming that it is the hard workers in our industry who have suffered an inexcusable blind spot before the pandemic; and that it is time we recognize that we offer good meaningful work for hundreds of thousands of Canadians. What we do with this new attention and praise is key. Truck drivers notably, as Jean mentions have a remarkable and unique role in that they get to see sights many of us never will. This is perhaps a potential draw for recruiters to take note of. A philanthropist at heart, she also encouraged us to leverage our reach. She earnestly reminded us that our trucks are moving billboards for cause and positivity. This is what many of our Top Fleet Employers do when participating in various charitable causes such as: Plaid for Dad, Pink for the Cure, and Art Saves Lives. ?We often forget to highlight this part of the trucking industry as an attraction ? that it is not JUST trucking, it is so much more. It is a multitude of causes and action, and ingenuity. By highlighting the change maker abilities of our sector, Jean created a powerful united feeling of potential.

Employers have an opportunity

Micha?lle Jean also reminded us that the pandemic has created an opening for us to further investigate some of our collective societal issues. Saying, ?In the same way lemon juice and a light bulb manifest invisible ink? ? the pandemic has highlighted many core societal issues including, racism, sexism, homophobia, and ageism. Thus, perhaps the pandemic has helped to dismantle many of the things that are otherwise wrong with our current society. She challenges employers to use this moment for change and examine their own diversity and inclusion policies.

 

Women belong everywhere ? including trucking

Halla T?masd?ttir reminded us of the ?inner leader? that we all have. We need to confront our imposter feelings in order to excel and believe in our capabilities. And, as women, we need to stop doubting and questioning our abilities and our right to be in certain professional spaces. Women belong everywhere ? and yes, that includes trucking. The pandemic, she noted, has brought about a time when women?s leadership is being noticed and recognized. T?masd?ttir reminded us that when women have a seat at the table, positive changes are made, and we see progress. For more women to be in leadership, young women need mentors and to see women who are succeeding at the highest levels.

No more business as usual

We may never go back to how things were before the pandemic ? and Halla highlighted that this is not necessarily a bad thing. A lot was wrong with the world before and the pandemic is causing us to question what could ultimately, be better.? Maybe Canadians can continue to honour truckers and the entire trucking industry as essential work.? Perhaps we can embrace a future when trucking is more alluring to new and young workers. And certainly, with current unemployment rates, we have the possibility to invite and welcome people into our industry more than ever before.

The trucking industry is one of change, one that appreciates inclusion and diversity, one that encourages women?s leadership, and one that is filled with Women with Drive. Women with Drive Leadership Summit thus remains an important event for the trucking industry ? because we still need and always will need, women with drive.

 

 

Supporting Women in Your Workplace: 5 Best Practices from Top Fleet Employers

By: Alero Okajugu

Diversity and inclusion in the workplace can help increase productivity, innovation, and employee retention, benefits that cannot be overstated in today?s business world.

Women are essential to diversity, but the trucking and logistics industry still falls short with just 15% of women in the workforce.

Trucking HR?s Top Fleet Employers Program recognizes and celebrates companies with innovative employment practices and policies, and several fleets have taken specific steps to improve their recruitment and retention of women.

In reviewing what these fleets have done to diversify and encourage inclusion in their workplace, here are five best practices that stand out.

 

Creating connections

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By participating in industry events and creating formal and informal coaching and mentoring arrangements, Top Fleet Employers help women leverage networks that can lead to professional development opportunities in the industry. These initiatives include Trucking HR Canada?s Women with Drive event or partnering with Women Building Futures.

 

Targetted recruitment

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Many of our Top Fleet Employers take a targeted approach to recruiting both men and women who want to work in a diverse environment. For instance, a hiring practice among many Top Fleet Employers is to ensure that job descriptions in recruiting ads are free of unconscious bias that may affect individuals applying for that role. We also see recruitment targeted at community groups that focus on women, and customized onboarding processes. These efforts make women feel like they belong and not like they must adapt to fit into the workplace.

 

Flexible work arrangements

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97% of our Top Fleet Employers offer benefits, policies, and flexible work arrangements to support their employees and their families. Some examples are a policy that allows truck drivers decide when and where to shut down overnight; flexible start/stop times; being able to choose routes close to home; permission to have a family member in the cab; part-time work upon request; and separate facilities for women. Workplace flexibility fosters loyalty and a higher quality of life for the employee, which consequently benefits the employer.

 

Evaluate your training offerings

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Top Fleet Employers are committed to offering training that supports a diverse and safe workforce. For example, they provide sensitivity training that addresses stereotypes and biases in the workplace. In the case of female drivers, safety and security remain a very big concern. In response, many employers have programs that include training in anti-harassment and violence in the workplace?an area for which Trucking HR Canada has developed industry-specific training.

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If you?ve got it ? flaunt it

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Top Fleet Employers with a good percentage of female employees in various roles portray this in their recruitment tools. Pictures of women can be seen in their public postings, websites, and other social media platforms.

 

There is much to be done in order to increase the number of women in trucking and logistics. However, our Top Fleet Employers are leaders and have embraced a culture that continually encourages and supports women in the industry.

 

As we approach International Women?s Day on March 8, take a moment to consider how your organization is doing when it comes to recruiting and retaining women. If you need a place to start, visit THRC?s website for helpful resources.

Gender imbalance in trucking and logistics

By: Craig Faucette

Some jobs just seem to attract more workers of one gender than another. These patterns have more to do with long-standing biases about which industries and occupations are ?better suited? to men or women than actual gender-based differences in knowledge, abilities, or career interests.

In trucking and logistics, men make up 85% of the workforce. The ratio of women to men drops even further in certain jobs such as truck driver (3% female) or technicians and mechanics (1.5% female).

In contrast, women account for 87% of general administrative workers, 85% of accounting staff, and 61% of HR staff.

These numbers are consistent across the industry: similar data show up on virtually every trucking association?s website around the world!

Is it the job or the industry?

Why does this gender imbalance exist?

Is it the reputation of the industry as being a male domain? Or that certain jobs are perceived as being inherently oriented toward men?

Our labour market information suggests that it may be both.

On one hand, the percentage of female mechanics working across all sectors of the economy is roughly the same as it is in trucking and logistics: 2%, compared with 1.5%. Perhaps the job just doesn?t appeal to women.

On the other hand, more that 50% of dispatchers in Canada are women compared to only 39% in trucking and logistics, suggesting that the industry is an issue.

THRC?s research, ?Millennials Have Drive 2,? found that women make up about one third of the 1.1 million ?warm leads? who say they might consider a job in trucking.

That?s more than 360,000 young women.

Where we are today

What do we know about women who already work in trucking?

Right now, about 97,000 women are working in Canada?s trucking and logistics industry and more than half are doing front-line jobs in shipping and receiving (21%); driving a truck (10%); driving for a local delivery or courier service (8%); dispatching (6%); or material handling (5%).

Another 21% of women in trucking work in administration, accounting, and human resources.

Fewer than 5% of the sector?s female employees are in management or supervisory positions. This small fraction in senior leadership no doubt contributes to the industry?s problems recruiting and retaining women.

Finding equilibrium

Highlighting the experiences and variety of career choices of women who already work in trucking and logistics could help companies appeal to more female leads.

And tapping into their workplace experiences would help us all better understand and address the gender-based challenges and barriers in our workforce. We must:

– Determine if the challenges our industry faces in attracting and retaining women are the same or different than those in other male-dominated industries.

– Study and learn from more gender-balanced sectors.

– Create a more balanced culture that appeals to diverse groups of people.

– Set clear, achievable, and measurable targets and KPIs for achieving a more gender balanced workforce in trucking and logistics.

With our industry facing severe labour shortages?on average, trucking and logistics has about 7,300 vacant jobs annually?women represent a vastly underutilized source of workers. The industry?s gender imbalance is a complex issue but one that requires us to think about the most appropriate strategies to get it right.

New Anti-Harassment and Violence Obligations for Federally Regulated Fleets

New Anti-Harassment and Violence Obligations for Federally Regulated Fleets

July 7, 2020 by Marisha Tardif

 

Many fleets in our employer community have been following developments surrounding Bill C-65 ? a piece of federal legislation that amends the Canada Labour Code by introducing new guidelines on how harassment and violence can be prevented in the workplace, and how to address it if and when it occurs. While Bill C-65 received Royal Assent in 2018, specifics surrounding employer obligations and compliance timelines remained to be confirmed. But as per recent updates, there is now new information surrounding detailed requirements that federally regulated employers will have to meet.

On June 24, 2020, the federal government published the?Work Place Harassment and Violence Prevention Regulations. The new framework will apply to the federally regulated private sector as of January 1st, 2021. Transportation companies that provide international and interprovincial services are regulated by the federal government and are therefore subject to these updates.

New rules will thus soon come into effect that will increase employers? responsibilities in matters of workplace health and safety. The new Regulations set a framework of obligations centered on three elements: the prevention of workplace harassment and violence, the delivery of a timely and effective response to incidents, and the provision of support for affected employees. Based on these three pillars, the new Regulations bring changes in the following main areas:

  • Workplace harassment and violence prevention policy
    • Employers will be required to make available a workplace harassment and violence prevention policy that aligns with new Regulatory requirements.
  • Workplace assessments
    • Employers will have to conduct assessments that identify risks of harassment and violence in the workplace and implement preventative measures to protect the workplace from these risks.
  • Emergency procedures
    • Employers will be required to develop emergency procedures to be followed in situations where an occurrence of harassment and violence poses and immediate danger to the health and safety of an employee(s).
  • Training
    • Employers will be required to identify and develop harassment and violence training and ensure it is delivered to all members of the organization, including to employers themselves but also to employees, and to the designated recipient of harassment and violence complaints in the workplace. Training will need to align to specific guidelines proposed under the Regulations, and will be delivered once every three years, including in the onboarding of new employees.
  • Support measures
    • Employers will be required to make information available regarding support services that employees may access should they experience an incident of workplace harassment and violence.
  • Resolution process
    • Employers will be required to respond to every notification of an occurrence of harassment and violence in their workplace, but also to structure their response around a more detailed web of specific requirements (including prescribed timelines, processes, and procedures).
  • Records and reports
    • Employers will be required to keep records relating to harassment and violence in their workplace. They will also be required to submit annual reports to the Minister, as well as report on any fatalities that occur as a result of workplace harassment and violence.

It is clear from the above that the new Regulations will require major adjustments to policies, programs, and processes for many employers. Given new requirements, it is important for both employers and employees to understand the nature of these changes and how it will impact them and their workplace.

Trucking HR Canada is committed to providing trucking sector-specific resources to support the needs of the industry in adapting to these new changes. Central amongst these tools will be a bilingual suite of online and in-person training modules for employers, employees, and designated recipients of workplace harassment and violence complaints. Pamphlets that clarify employer and employee rights and obligations will also be made available, in addition to other forthcoming resources centered on best practices in workplace anti-harassment and violence. These supports will be made available in time for the January 2021 entry into force of the Regulations ? follow our website and social media channels to find out more.

 

My Toolbox for Mentoring Women in Canada’s Trucking Industry: Employer & Association Guide

Bridging the Gap: Women In Trucking and Logistics

Prepare Now for Federal Pay Equity

May 7, 2019 by Miguel Mangalindan

 

Modernizing your workforce starts with modernizing your HR approach.

In today’s labour market, successful truck fleets and logistics companies know that staying abreast of the issues will help them stay ahead of the competition. Follow Trucking HR Canada’s 10 part “Modernizing Your HR Approach” blog series as we navigate emerging trends and share tips for finding, hiring, and retaining the talent you need.

Miguel Mangalindan is a Senior Associate Lawyer at Monkhouse Law where he practices Employment, Human Rights and Disability Insurance Law. He was a panelist at Trucking HR Canada’s Mental Health symposium last October, and recently participated as one of the Learning Highway session presenters at Women with Drive, sharing insights on how Bill C-86 will impact you. This week, we invited him to again share his expertise with us through our Blog Series.

On December 13, 2018, the federal government’s Bill C-86, which among other things establishes a new Pay Equity Act, received royal assent. The Act will require federally regulated employers to make sure that employees in female-dominated jobs receive the same level of compensation as those in male-dominated jobs of similar effort, responsibility, skill, and working conditions.

In short, it aims to ensure equal pay for work of equal value.

Who has to comply?

The Pay Equity Act applies to federal workplaces with 10 or more employees. This includes public services; Crown agencies and private companies that operate a federal work, undertaking, or business; and any employer with more than $1 million in federal government contracts.

Employers will have three years to establish a pay equity plan once the Act comes into force, and have to review and update their plan at least once every five years. Different deadlines apply to provincially regulated employers that become subject to the Act due to becoming federally regulated after the Act comes into force.

What is a Pay Equity Plan?

According to the Act, a pay equity plan must do the following:

  • Indicate the number of employees and job classes within the workplace;
  • Indicate what gender is predominant in each class;
  • Evaluate the value of work performed by each job class;
  • Identify the compensation associated with each job class and compare female- and male-predominant job classes of similar value;
  • Set out the results of the comparison, identifying which female-predominant job classes require an increase in compensation and when those increases are due; and
  • Provide information on the dispute-resolution procedure available to employees.

How do you put this plan into action?

In terms of process requirements, there must be a committee that creates the pay equity plan, notice of the plan to all employees, and then implementation. The employer must also maintain pay equity after the initial plan and payouts are made.

The Act specifies the members of the pay equity committee as well as the contents of the plan. It also sets out a formula for how to compare male and female jobs. There are rights of appeal to a new federal Pay Equity Commission that will be part of the Canadian Human Rights Commission.

The federal government has yet to proclaim a date when the Act will come into force but there will be some grace period allowed for implementation.

In the meantime, federally regulated employers should start reviewing their compensation systems and begin the process of planning and implementing pay equity, which will take lots of time, expertise, and resources to do.

A Modern HR Approach Is a Collaborative One

April 30, 2019 by Bridget O'Shaughnessy

 

“Modernizing your workforce starts with modernizing your HR approach.”

In today’s labour market, successful truck fleets and logistics companies know that staying abreast of the issues will help them stay ahead of the competition. Follow our “Modernizing Your HR Approach” blog series as we navigate emerging trends and share tips for finding, hiring, and retaining the talent you need.

As the world becomes more interconnected, we can learn a lot from other economies and cultures about how to solve our own issues in the Canadian trucking and logistics industry. One of those issues is the inclusion of women and how to improve the diversity of our industry overall.

What can we learn from others and what can we share?

On April 23, Trucking HR Canada was invited to speak at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Women in Transportation Roundtable in Vancouver. APEC brings together leaders, ministers, senior officials and business representatives, who meet regularly to drive the APEC agenda forward and implement policies and projects across a wide range of issues. Since 2015, the U.S. Department of Transportation, U.S. Department of State, and the U.S. Agency for International Development have worked together to implement the APEC Women in Transportation (WIT) Initiative, seeing value in this solution to labour shortages.

For me, the roundtable demonstrated just how important it is to collaborate with people from different economies and sectors who have taken on similar challenges. Here’s what we learned:

A diverse workforce is a more successful workforce

Gender equity in the workplace is no longer just an equality issue, it’s an economic one. When women do better, everyone wins.

Progress takes time

“At the current rate of progress, it will take 200 years to close the gender gap,” said Thao Pham, Associate Deputy Minister at Transport Canada, during her opening remarks at the roundtable. She’s referring to a study from CCPA Research Associate Kate McInturff that looks at Canada’s progress in closing the gap between men and women over the past two decades. Despite high-profile initiatives to increase the representation of women in politics and on corporate boards, Canada’s overall score has climbed just 2.3% in two decades.

If we want to see gender equity in our lifetime, we are going to have to make some dramatic changes. But how?

Mentorship programs work

In a study by the Wharton School of Business, 25% of employees who took part in their company’s mentoring program have experienced a salary increase compared to just 5% of non-participants. Mentors were six times more likely to be promoted than those not in the program; mentees were promoted five times more often.

Trucking HR Canada’s “Industry Youth” surveys show that the majority of young people want more mentoring and coaching in the workplace, and our “Women with Drive” surveys have two in three respondents citing mentorship as a tool that would support them professionally.

Key takeaway: Implement that mentorship program you’ve been thinking about.

Include women at every level

Gender equality is more likely to be achieved when women are involved with planning, hiring, training, and mentorship at every level of a company.

In the panel moderated by Trucking HR Canada’s CEO, Angela Splinter, we learned why it’s important to make a conscious effort to include women in surveys and data collection. It is also key to be aware of biases within the data based on women’s previous participation in the data.

The insightful panelists who spoke included: David Chien, Executive Director, Office of Policy and Plans, U.S. Federal Aviation Administration; Lori Summer, U.S. National Highway Transportation Safety Administration; Dr. Stephanie Ivey, University of Memphis; and Kelly Clifton, Portland State University.

I am hopeful that, moving forward, these collaborative approaches across economies and sectors will help everyone recognize opportunities for gender equity in our industry and in our country in my lifetime. We’ll continue to share ideas, but it’s also time for action.