Allcargo: Technology Enabling Inclusive Environment for Women

Group Chief Human Resource Officer, Allcargo Group
“Women bring unique insights and approaches to problem-solving, making them invaluable assets in shaping successful teams and driving industry-wide progress.”

Indrani Chatterjee, Group Chief Human Resource Officer, Allcargo Group.

Role of women in technology and innovation within the logistics industry is set to experience a significant expansion in the years ahead.

As technology continues to drive innovation in logistics, diverse perspectives are essential for tackling complex challenges. Women's contributions are increasingly integral to technological advancements in the field, fostering creativity and progress. This dedication is poised to bring women into leadership roles and narrow the gender gap in traditionally male-dominated positions within logistics. Initiatives aimed at attracting, developing, retaining, and advancing women will be pivotal in this evolution.

Disparities exist not only between genders but also within industries and companies.

Balancing work and personal life are crucial for overall well-being. Personally, I prioritize setting clear boundaries between work and personal time, dedicating specific hours for work, utilizing efficient task management tools, and making time for rejuvenating activities outside of work.

Disparities in pay exist not only between genders but also within industries and companies, influenced by factors like industry reputation and educational background. Despite efforts to address pay inequality, it remains prevalent across various sectors, including media and glam industries, and also persists in the corporate world, influenced by factors such as educational background and profession.

To effectively tackle pay disparity, proactive measures such as transparent salary policies, regular pay audits, and advocating for equal opportunities regardless of gender or educational background are crucial. Organizations must recognize the value of all employees and ensure fair compensation, fostering an inclusive and equitable work environment.

Seek mentors who can provide valuable guidance and support.

For women aiming to pursue a career in logistics, several key considerations can enhance their journey. Firstly, maintain a thirst for learning and embrace opportunities for growth, as the industry is dynamic and constantly evolving. Secondly, believe in yourself and seize opportunities, regardless of your starting point. Thirdly, seek out mentors who can provide valuable guidance and support. Their insights can help navigate challenges and unlock your full potential. Additionally, prioritize involvement in causes aligned with your values for personal fulfillment and professional success. Lastly, choose employers who recognize and value your contributions, fostering an environment where you can thrive. By following these principles, women can establish rewarding careers in logistics, contributing to its ongoing evolution and success."

We prioritize inclusivity over mere diversity, ensuring equal treatment for all employees.

Avoiding biases against any gender is crucial. We prioritize inclusivity over mere diversity, ensuring equal treatment for all employees. Emphasizing inclusivity underscores the importance of treating everyone equally, without granting extra privileges or denying opportunities based on gender. This perspective has fostered a culture of equality and respect in the logistics industry, conveying the message that inclusivity means treating everyone equally, irrespective of gender. Ultimately, this approach helps overcome challenges and fosters a more inclusive workplace environment in logistics.

One significant challenge we faced was ensuring workplace safety. By advocating for a universal security approach, including mandatory presence of women security guards, we've created a safe environment for all employees, regardless of gender. This approach recognizes safety as a universal concern, avoiding discriminatory practices.

Both GATI and Allcargo have actively promoted women's advancement into leadership roles, with several global offices being led by women.

In FY 2023-24, Allcargo witnessed an increase in the proportion of women in its workforce, going from 14.5 percent to 17.5 percent, indicating the progress made in promoting gender diversity.

Across its 14 operational units, its subsidiary GATI in an effort to provide equitable opportunities across various work schedules, has pioneered an initiative where women exclusively manage the first shift. These all-female staff is assigned the first shift or the general shift.

From April 2022 to March 2023, GATI welcomed 162 new women employees. This included 67 at the Associate level, 69 at the Executive level, and 26 at the Managerial level. This figure represents 24.1 percent of GATI's total on-roll hiring during that period.

Meanwhile, Allcargo brought onboard a total of 90 women employees in the same period. Among them, 71 were hired for junior positions, while 19 assumed managerial roles or higher. These hires accounted for 18 percent of Allcargo's total on-role hires in FY 2022-23.

Our ‘Restart’ program is aimed at supporting women professionals who have taken a break from their careers due to personal or family reasons. It started two years ago, and its goal is to help these women ease back into their jobs. Through this program, women receive mentoring and support to help them transition back into the workforce smoothly. The idea is to assist them in balancing their work and family responsibilities more effectively.

India's economy continues to expandAllcargo Gati's Bhiwandi STCDW Garde A warehouse which is 1.48 lakh sq. ft.

Advancements in technology have impacted what we do in more ways than one.

At Allcargo Group, innovation is ingrained in our culture and there is a constant drive to enhance products and services. We have embraced new-age technologies which has enabled us to streamline processes and improve efficiency and customer satisfaction. Collaborative ideation among team members helps us to foster a culture of innovation, ensuring that the latest technological solutions are explored and implemented. We also regularly engage with startups for facilitating the incubation of bright ideas that further enhance our operations. From implementing IoT and blockchain for supply chain visibility to leveraging AI and machine learning for predictive analytics, technology has enabled us to optimize resource utilization, minimize costs, and adapt to evolving market demands swiftly.

As India's economy continues to expand, so does the demand for efficient logistics services, presenting abundant opportunities for innovation and advancement within the sector.

The surge in e-commerce highlights the need for efficient delivery networks, while the Covid-19 crisis emphasizes the importance of resilient supply chains. Integrating technology such as GPS tracking and AI-driven automation enhances visibility, reduces errors, and optimizes processes, leading to cost savings and increased productivity.

Logistics is fundamental to trade, commerce, and supply chain operations, driving economic growth. With advanced technologies like AI and IoT alongside seamless transportation systems, the strategic significance of the sector cannot be overstated. A robust logistics industry, as seen in other nations, fuels economic growth, positioning India's aspirations for realization.

The pandemic has underscored the critical role of logistics, demonstrating its importance in crisis management and ensuring supply chain resilience. This recognition has propelled the industry forward, emphasizing the necessity for continuous improvement and adaptation to address evolving challenges. Despite infrastructure limitations and regulatory hurdles, the industry's dynamic nature presents opportunities for growth and development.

Industry and government can take several steps to encourage and support women in logistics in India.

Gender-Responsive Infrastructure: Implemen- ting gender-responsive infrastructure at logistics facilities is crucial. This includes ensuring sufficient lighting, hygiene and sanitization and security measures to enhance workplace safety and efficiency for all. Such infrastructure not only fosters a safer environment but also boosts productivity. This has also recently been mandated by the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC).

Training and Skill Development Programmes: Specialized training and skill development programs tailored to women in logistics, can empower women with the necessary skills and knowledge to excel in their roles within the industry.

Awareness Campaigns and Outreach: Conduct awareness campaigns to promote gender inclusivity and diversity within the logistics sector. Encourage companies to adopt policies that prioritize gender equality and create an inclusive work culture.

Supportive Policies and Legislation: Advocate for supportive policies and legislation that promote gender equality and protect women's rights in the workplace. This can include measures such as anti-discrimination laws and maternity leave provisions.

Networking and Mentorship Opportunities: Facilitate networking and mentorship opportunities for women in logistics, allowing them to connect with peers and mentors who can provide guidance, support, and career advancement opportunities.
LIFTING & SPECIALIZED TRANSPORT, March - April 2024
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