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Gender Equality Plan
1. Introduction

Resilience Guard (RG) GmbH aims to create a working environment where dealing with diversity is an enriching experience as we are willing to learn from each other's opinions, experiences, and competencies.

Moreover, Resilience Guard GmbH as an equal-opportunity employer has the purpose of promoting a working environment where each employee, member and external collaborator feels accepted and appreciated.

Referring to the term 'diversity' Resilience Guard GmbH intends that range of characteristics that make people different from one another, expressed through qualities such as cultural background, disability, social background, home language, age, ideology, gender, and gender identity, as well as values, opinions, self-image, etc.

All these features combined determine a unique individual identity. Resilience Guard GmbH promotes diversity and sees it as a normal phenomenon that involves everybody in our contemporary society.

Improving and supporting Gender equality, reflecting the Horizon Europe legal basis, for Resilience Guard GmbH is a cross-cutting priority.

This Gender Equality Plan (GEP) is intended as Resilience Guard GmbH's commitment to not only promoting gender equality but also being part of a broader institutional and cultural change.

The present document has been structured in order to address not only gender bias during the working collaboration but also including the pre-employment phase.

In this regard, a recent piece of research by Harvard Business Review proved that most of the gender biases occurred during the selection process of candidates1. These figures increased if the LGTBQ+ category is taken into account because 20% of LGTBQ+ Americans reported having experienced discrimination because of their sexual orientation during a hiring process.

Furthermore, to cover all the areas of working collaboration and have an organic and comprehensive plan to encourage gender equality, it seemed necessary to further break the working collaboration- phase into 3 specific sections regarding internal relations – among the employees and members-, external relations- with suppliers, partners, institutions- and a vertical relation between Resilience Guard GmbH and its employees.

Finally, gender equality will be further promoted and achieved in each form of communication activities – including both traditional and digital communication channels- both within Resilience Guard GmbH and with external audiences.

Subsequently, the objectives of the Gender Equality Plan, as well as the measures which will be proposed and adopted by Resilience Guard GmbH to meet the set objectives, have been listed. In order to promote and improve gender equality, the five main objectives for the period 2023- 2027 are addressed as follows:

  • 1. Encouraging Gender Equality and Absence of Bias during the selection process
  • 2. Raising Awareness about Gender Equality during all the phases of working collaboration within the company- among employees/associates
  • 3. Promoting the Absence of Gender Bias in professional relationships between Resilience Guard GmbH's personnel/associates with external partners and suppliers
  • 4. Improving Gender Equality in each aspect of the working collaboration between Resilience Guard GmbH–intended as a gender-equal employer-and its own employee
  • 5. Implementing a gender- sensitive communication strategy

2. Encouraging Gender Equality and Absence of Bias during the selection process

Resilience Guard GmbH supports the principle of equal treatment of all people, refraining from any form of discrimination, including gender discrimination. Indirect discrimination and biases are also condemned because they can give advantages to potential candidates from a particular ethnic or social group.

Because Resilience Guard GmbH aims to develop an organizational culture focused on multiculturism, diversity and gender equality, Resilience Guard GmbH's recruitment policy exclusively focuses on evaluating candidates' personal and professional skillset. Job advertisements are public and address as many diverse potential candidates as possible, having always in focus a gender-friendly format. The selection process, as well, evaluates exclusively candidates' skillset and expertise not considering (in the evaluation process) age, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, religion, and other subjective factors/qualities.

The same principles are also applied in internal processes regarding career progression so that women and men would have the same equal opportunities to advance their careers.

In order to ensure equal treatment to each potential candidate, Resilience Guard GmbH will implement the following actions:

  • a. Write public job advertisements addressing as many diverse potential candidates as possible in a gender-friendly format in order to value candidates' expertise and skillset and not their gender attributes or their sexual orientation.
  • b. Provide the professionals in charge of recruiting with the necessary knowledge about gender awareness during the selection process- via dedicated workshops or publicly available online material
  • c. Collecting candidates' feedback in order to identify potential gender-related red flags and address them promptly.

3. Raising Awareness about Gender Equality during all the phases of working collaboration within the company- among employees/associates

Thus, promoting a gender-neutral approach does not stop at the selection process but it is an in-progress process that should be also applied to each aspect of the employee/ member working collaboration.

The first essential step to undertake fairer and more inclusive decisions is for sure the accomplishment of a high level of gender awareness for all Resilience Guard GmbH's members and employees. Increasing gender sensitivity- intended as the ability to step back from the perspective of gender roles- will help to prevent and reduce conscious and unconscious discriminatory actions. Finally, a high degree of awareness regarding gender-equal practices will also benefit the achievement of all the aims included in the present Gender Equality Plan. To ensure extensive gender-equality knowledge among Resilience Guard GmbH's members and employees, the following actions will be implemented:

  • a. Provide each employee /member with the present Gender Equality Plan at the moment of work induction or the beginning of a partnership collaboration. The Gender Equality Plan will be completed through Progress Reports including a collection of qualitative and quantitative data to track the implementation of the key objectives.
  • b. Provide each employee/ member with dedicated training in order to boost their knowledge regarding Gender Equality practices. The stated training will take place at the moment of induction for new members/ employees, followed up by some specific activities such as gender equality workshops and seminars, dedicated training courses and gender-neutral communication implementation each semester. Additional training courses or awareness activities could be added to the stated ones each time additional training courses or awareness activities could be added to the stated ones each time Swiss legal framework about Gender Equality will have the latest updates and developments (I.e. "Gleichstellungsstrategie 2030", namely the Gender Equality Strategy 2030, which is the federal government's first national strategy with the aim of specifically promoting equality between women and men).
  • c. Create a public section on Resilience Guard GmbH's website including a collection of dedicated material on gender equality, gender sensitivity, and unconscious bias. This section will keep updated on the occurrence by the Gender Function. Aiming to record progress towards the main Gender Equality objectives stated in the present Gender Equality Plan, progress reports will be included in this area.
  • d. Appoint a dedicated staff member with the role of "Gender Equality Officer", a function/role that will oversee gender monitoring3 and handling potential gender-equality-related issues. Employees and Members can report gender discriminatory actions to the Gender Equality Officer in order to take all the necessary practical actions and avoid further gender discrimination.
  • e. Collecting data4 about the Gender Equality Status within Resilience Guard GmbH. With the purpose to ensure the most gender-equal workplace possible, additional data regarding the status of gender equality among the employees/members will be collected via anonymous surveys at the end of each semester. This action is included in a broader plan of the antidiscrimination policy line (paragraph 6.14. in RG's Employee Handbook) promoted by Resilience Guard GmbH that discourages and punishes practices such as gossiping, harassment, and racism among others
  • f. Analysing Data to establish the key differences and gaps between women and men within the company. After their collection, data will be analysed to identify the causes – to mitigate via prompt and practical actions- of gender imbalance.

4. Promoting the absence of Gender Bias in professional relationships between Resilience Guard GmbH's personnel/associates with external partners and suppliers

Similarly, to the internal relations among members and employees, Resilience Guard GmbH establishes the same rules of conduct with our external partners and suppliers. For this reason, the following aims will be implemented:

  • a. The dedicated section about Gender Equality will also include guidance in behaving in order to meet the gender equality requirements with external partners.
  • b. Give Resilience Guard GmbH's partners and suppliers the possibility to report an act of gender discrimination received by a Resilience Guard GmbH member/employee to the Gender Equality Officer/Team in order to investigate the matter and solve the dispute.
  • c. Provide online access to the Gender Equality website section and the present Gender Equality Plan to all suppliers /partners. As the section stated above will be public, each visitor of Resilience Guard GmbH's website will be able to read and download the related documents.

5. Improving Gender Equality in each aspect of the working collaboration between Resilience Guard GmbH-intended as a gender-equal employer-its own employees

Resilience Guard GmbH aims to ensure each employee/member fair and equal treatment in the workplace. As an equal opportunity employer, Resilience Guard GmbH has already established an anti-discriminatory policy that aims to evaluate each candidate's skill set, not considering features such as ethnic group, religion, gender, physical appearance, social status, sexual orientation, etc. as influential for his/her/ them hiring outcome.

Resilience Guard GmbH promotes an environment in which diversity does not constitute barriers but facilitates the sharing of new ideas and perspectives. Additionally, Resilience Guard GmbH commits to granting the best work-life balance to each member and employee.

Specifically, in order to ensure fair gender-equal treatment of employees/members the following actions will be taken in place:

  • a. Keeping and promoting a gender-equal policy along with a broad anti-discrimination policy.
  • b. Carefully monitoring the gender-equal current status of the workplace and its progress to fill potential gaps that would arise.
  • c. Providing the employees/members with ongoing gender equality training and dedicated resources.
  • d. Taking concrete actions to sanction potential gender-discriminatory acts undertaken by members/employees.
  • e. Establishing that Parental leave and Childcare/Elderly care leave will be assured to each employee no matter their sex.
  • f. Granting pregnancy leave (and period leave) to each female employee. Implementing this action, female employees will not see pregnancy as a potential danger/ obstacle for their working career and will have the same opportunities as male colleagues for career promotions.
  • g. Giving the possibility to work from home in case of childcare or elderly assistanc
  • h. Assuring Children and Family allowances accordingly to the current Swiss and Cantonal Regulations.

6. Implementing a Gender-Sensitive communication strategy

One of the main objectives of RG GmbH's mission is to help organizations mitigate the risk of business interruptions and to help clients rely on RG's Business Continuity, Crisis Management and Risk Management consulting services to improve their organizational resilience. This objective implies a predominant role in communication activities concerning sharing relevant information, promotion activities as well as taking part in specific workshops and events. This objective implies a predominant role in communication activities concerning sharing relevant information, promotion activities as well as taking part in specific workshops and events.

For this reason, Resilience Guard GmbH should promote gender-aware communication in each channel of communication that will be ensured as follows:

  • a. Utilize a neutral gender vocabulary in order to promote an inclusive dialogue for the audience.
  • b. Refrain from reproducing gender stereotype
  • c. Assure to show diversity even in writing and marketing products such as flyers, banners on the website, press releases, and social media posts.

7. Commitment on the part of members and Implementation across RG

In this integrated Gender Equality Plan, Resilience Guard GmbH underlines its commitment to an ambitious broader gender-equality policy. The Management, the members and the employees will endorse and acknowledge this commitment, which will be publicly available after publication on the dedicated website section by March 17th, 2023.

Additionally, Resilience Guard GmbH commits to implementing wider gender and diversity awareness into all other policy areas and activities of the association. Moreover, gender equality awareness will be one of the general objectives that Resilience Guard GmbH will implement in the period 2023-2027.

Regular strategic consultations will take place between the Management and the GEO in order to raise gender awareness among Resilience Guard GmbH members and minimize any sort of gender discrimination.

By taking shared responsibility, Resilience Guard GmbH aims to achieve a respectful, safe and inclusive workplace.