NHRDN, Avtar collaborate to promote DE&I

The MoU entered into by the two bodies will accelerate diversity hiring in the corporate sector, especially MSMEs


National HRD Network (NHRDN), India’s apex body of HR professionals, has entered into an agreement with the Avtar Group — the diversity, equity and inclusion solutions company — to help give a push to DE&I in the corporate world, including the micro, small & medium enterprises (MSMEs).

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by the two entities to this effect.

According to the National Sample Survey (NSS) 73rd round, corporate sector and MSMEs have been creating crores of jobs in the urban and rural areas across the India.

Avtar Group will now provide certification programmes for corporates, including MSMEs, on their DE&I capability development with the primary focus on their leaders, founders and HR leaders.

“Corporates including SMEs and micro-enterprises are the majority of employers in India and the potential of job creation, particularly for skilled as well as the marginalised talent pool is huge,” said Saundarya Rajesh, founder-president, Avtar Group.

Just as large organisations in the metros see the advantage of having a diverse talent pool, “the small and medium industries also need the influence of inclusion, in order to unleash greater productivity and profitability”, said Rajesh.

Rajesh feels that a culture of diversity and inclusion will help the corporate sector and MSMEs enhance their top and bottom lines. However, it will also have a multiplier effect on the national economy as it will help put more money in the hands of under-represented talent, including women, those with disabilities, veterans and members of the LGBTQA+ community.

As per Rajesh, the focus on inclusion will give a much-needed boost to economic activity, which will further encourage employers to pursue diversity hiring.

A certification programme for diversity professionals, a recognition and awards process for diversity champions and other awareness creation activities are also covered in the MoU.

Dhananjay Singh, director general, National HRD Network, highlighted how NHRDN “has been focusing on strengthening the HR ecosystem by providing networking, learning and knowledge creation opportunities”.

The pandemic has driven home the fact that “crisis times call for teams that are more inclusive and diverse, in order to enable better problem solving. This is all the more the need of the hour for the Corporate sector and MSMEs’ community, since it is imperative that they bounce back to economic prosperity,” said Singh.

Through the MOU with Avtar, “we are committing to enabling the corporate and MSME community by providing leadership skills to create diversity and inclusion in their workplaces,” added Singh.

A global centre for grooming leaders and the national apex body of professionals committed to promoting the ‘people development’ movement in India, NHRDN works to enhance the capability of human resource professionals to compete globally, thereby creating value for society.

The over 30-year old autonomous, not-for-profit, professionally managed organisation, has over 14,600 members representing multinationals, public and private organisations including the Government, MSMEs and NGOs spread across 30 chapters in India.

Avtar is over 20 years old and has been working in the areas of gender inclusion and career creation.

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