Together with many other companies, KUKA has signed the Diversity Charter, a commitment to an unprejudiced working environment and equal opportunities. But what role does diversity play at KUKA?
KUKA is a global company, and for that reason alone, tolerance and understanding are important to each other. Employees at KUKA should find a work environment that is free from prejudice and characterized by acceptance. Diversity is part of the corporate culture. “We can only be successful if we promote and use the diversity in the company,” says Silvia Buchinger, Head of Human Resources KUKA Group. “We work in an increasingly connected world. This allows us to move closer together despite the differences. At KUKA, we work across national borders for one goal: global sustainable success. The common goal connects us. However, we can only be successful if we have the necessary tolerance for origin, age, gender, sexual orientation and worldview in our daily cooperation. This results in social and economic challenges – but above all opportunities.”
At KUKA, the focus so far has been on gender diversity. This is obvious for a technology company, because women are still in a minority in the so-called MINT areas of mathematics, computer science, natural sciences and technology. “And those women who exist must first find their way into our company,” says Silvia Buchinger. But what can we do to make KUKA attractive to them and then promote them according to their potential in their professional development? A question not as trivial as it looks at first. To tackle this challenge as well, there is a women’s network in the company to help colleagues worldwide to network, to benefit from their mutual experiences and to find out what women want in the job market and at work.
“In 2018, however, we will also focus strongly on internationality,” says Sibylle Schroedter, the diversity representative in the company. “And we are working to raise awareness of diversity aspects that are currently anchored in the company’s compliance guidelines and to integrate diversity even better globally. Above all, diversity management also works internally. It increases the satisfaction and loyalty and thus ultimately also the performance of employees and managers.”
Social and economic trends are also changing the working world at KUKA. Globalization, demographic change, skills shortages, more people with a migrant background, digitization – these are just a few of the challenges companies face today. Among other things, their success depends on how they can position themselves in the world market as well as in the competition for qualified personnel. Diversity Management helps to respond to these trends. Moreover, it shows ways how to use them.