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Building a Diverse & Inclusive Workplace

At Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield of Western New York, we are dedicated to building an environment where our employees, members, and communities can celebrate who they are and lead healthy lives. Diverse and inclusive workplaces are invaluable not only for our employees but also for our members and the communities that we serve.

While there is no shortage of diverse talent, companies must be deliberate in their hiring and development efforts.

That’s why Highmark puts a strong emphasis on the recruitment, retention, development, and advancement of employees with diverse backgrounds.

At Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield, our Diversity and Inclusion Council guides our overall strategy and actions to support our employees internally and directs our external priorities. This Council also oversees our Business Resources Groups (BRGs), which connect employees through a common cause or interest, helping them feel a sense of equity and belonging. Our BRG Onyx draws support from leaders and employees across the company, establishing values that create an inclusive and respectful workplace for Black employees through programming and development, opportunities.

Likewise, our company’s Women’s Leadership Circle BRG engages female employees across the company to build support and confidence around issues that mean the most to them including career development and advancement, and how to navigate work-life integration.

As a community-based, not-for-profit health plan with more than 1,500 employees serving one million members, we know that what we do inside the workplace matters to those outside. That’s why we prioritize our community giving to support organizations and initiatives that address health disparities in our region.

Building a diverse and inclusive culture requires an intentional, all-encompassing strategy.

For our company, this includes listening to our employees; providing resources to support them personally and professionally, as well as tuning into current events and understanding how they impact employees differently. Most importantly, it means staying true to our values by carrying them through our business decisions.

For more than 85 years, our organization’s culture has been instrumental in our success, growth, and overall employee engagement. Now is the time for businesses and our community to build on our collective foundational values to create more inclusive, diverse workplaces.

 

About the Author:

Heather Gresham | Director, Talent Acquisition

Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield of Western New York:

 

 

Disclaimer: The above commentary entails the views of the author and not necessarily the views of the Buffalo Niagara Partnership.

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