WGEA awards citation to Pernod Ricard Winemakers for gender equity

March 1, 2021
By Ioni Doherty

Pernod Ricard Winemakers, producer of Jacob’s Creek, St Hugo and Orlando, is Australia’s first wine company to be named an Employer of Choice for Gender Equality (EOCGE) by the Australian Government’s Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA). The WGEA citation recognises employers that are committed to achieving gender equality in the workplace.

Bryan Fry, Chairman & CEO, Pernod Ricard Winemakers said: “Fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace where everyone has access to the same resources, opportunities and rewards is an important part of our commitment to valuing people. We are achieving this by instilling a mindset that drives long-term change, with gender being one area of focus.

EOCGE certification publicly reaffirms the importance we place on gender equality and we are proud to be the first wine company to receive this recognition, as well as the only current South Australian based business out of the 136 organisations awarded this citation.”

At Pernod Ricard, 53% of senior managers and 43% of the workforce population are women. The business exceeded its 2017 target of 40 per cent female representation in leadership roles by 2020, reporting 45% female representation in Australian leadership positions in 2019.

Pernod Ricard’s diversity and inclusion program, Better Balance, is embedded in all levels of the organisation with Better Balance Ambassadors on all Pernod Ricard sites. (The scope of the Better Balance program has been extended to incorporate diversity beyond gender, seeking to improve leadership representation of people from the LGBTQI and First Nations communities as well as cultural diversity. )

Helen Strachan, Legal & Corporate Affairs Director at Pernod Ricard Winemakers was the recipient of the Champion of Diversity and Equality Award from Australian Women In Wine Awards in November 2020.

Strachan has been part of the management committee that last year increased parental leave access and implemented Pernod Ricard’s domestic violence policy. She has been a part of making flexible work mainstream, uplifting parental leave entitlements, introducing diversity and inclusion training, closing the gender pay gap and conducting regular analysis to maintain our results.

But the biggest focus for the business last year – aside from the pandemic – was the implementation of pay equity across the organisation. Initial plans were to have pay equity in place by 2022, but once the discrepancy was identified, Pernod’s HR team worked hard to measure the inequity and rectify it.

“We did not want to kick the can on this one. If we say we believe in pay equity, we had to implement it sooner rather than later. Otherwise it becomes meaningless,” Strachan said.

Pernod Ricard Winemakers joins Diageo, Metcash and Lion who are existing Employer of Choice for Gender Equality citation holders.

Libby Lyons, Director, WGEA said: “This year, we are welcoming 17 new EOCGE citation holders who are joining the existing 119 citation holders from 2019-20. Despite the tremendous upheaval and disruption caused to Australian businesses by the COVID-19 pandemic, these dedicated organisations maintained an unswerving commitment to achieving their EOCGE citation.”

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