It goes without saying that Unilever Pakistan is one of the country’s most famous and recognized FMCG names. It wouldn’t be wrong to say that the manufacturing giant has always been several steps ahead when it comes to innovation and technology but there are also organizational attributes they are setting a benchmark for such as agility at the workplace and their equity, diversity and inclusion practices. The company has championed women empowerment by always going out of its way to promote, support, and facilitate women including their female employees and the women of the country through their various initiatives over the years. 

At the recently held Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce and Industry – the OICCI Women Empowerment Awards, Unilever Pakistan was awarded the top honor “OICCI Women Empowerment Award 2021”. The company was recognized for its continuous efforts in areas of inclusion, diversity, and equity. The company is one of the few organizations that remain committed to moving the needle on gender inclusion. This honor is a vital step in shining a bright light on the agenda of diversity and empowering women of our society.

Unilever is an organization that understands the lack of access to opportunities for women and actively advocates for inclusion and representation. The company is committed to going further than ever to break down barriers and create opportunities of growth and progress in our workplaces, our supply and distribution chains, and most importantly, our society. They believe that this won’t only be beneficial for their business but will have a significant impact on the world. And this award encourages the company to keep moving forward in that direction.

Unilever takes pride in its female employees and makes it a point to encourage and appreciate them for their work. Women are presiding important positions in the company and are present in all departments. The company is aware of the challenges women face when they come to work which is why the company has Day Care Centers for female employees who have to bring their kids to work. The company also offers maternity leaves and medical insurance among other incentives for its female employees. Unilever Pakistan also has a Career By Choice program in place to encourage women to return to the workplace after a gap.

The Overseas Investors Chamber of Commerce and Industry (OICCI) members consist of top 200 foreign investors. The committee recognizes and lays emphasis on the rising importance of women and how their involvement is imperative to create an enabling environment. It has become obvious that having women at the forefront is necessary to accelerate the economic growth of the country, according to Mr. Ghias Khan, President of OICCI. He wholeheartedly commended the efforts of foreign investors at the OICCI Women Empowerment Awards 2021 that were held earlier last week.

OICCI has kick-started various studies and research projects. The committee has been holding an annual survey among its members by recognizing those who have played an integral part in focusing on women empowerment. A policy paper from OICCI titled  “Increasing Women’s Inclusion in the Pakistan Economy” was also presented to the Ministry of Human Rights last year. “OICCI had initiated the OICCI Women Empowerment initiative in 2017 and has been regularly advocating for women empowerment among its membership”, Khan further added.

The purpose of the awards is to bring women to the center stage in business and operations and highlight the sensibility and acumen women bring to the table. Women are also business runners and executives who deserve a chair on the high table and it is high time the world, corporate and otherwise, make space for them.