Equal opportunities for all – a feature of successful companies
In the last five to ten years, the share of women in the world economy has been growing at a dizzying rate. Females not only make up an increasing percentage of the workforce but also take on the role of founders and influential leaders of companies from various industries, which employ community members and support numerous families. Thanks to engaged and responsible individuals, organizations and companies, awareness of the importance of women in the business world have been growing. Recognizing the importance of these challenges, the United Nations has defined 17 sustainable development goals, the implementation of which facilitates the development of the economy while protecting human rights and the natural ecosystem.
NIS is one of the companies in our country that is actively working on improving gender equality. With more than 11,000 employees, this company has a strong impact on the economy, not only in business terms but also in terms of setting corporate culture standards. NIS says that the company has created an environment for their employees in which everyone gets the opportunity to express their potential to the fullest, regardless of gender, nationality, religion or any other status that may cause unfair distinction between co-workers. Believing in equal opportunities for all and acting accordingly, NIS contributes to achieving gender equality in the workplace and has become an example of how to contribute to the empowerment of women and girls, as well as how to increase the role of women in business decision-making and society in general.
NIS gives everyone the same chance, breaks taboos and actively encourages members of the fairer sex to pursue their dreams
NIS pays special attention to the implementation of high standards for a fair and safe working environment for all employees, as well as for everybody with whom NIS does business. This includes unconditional respect for human rights, non-discrimination, respect for equality and the rights of employees guaranteed by the Labour Law, the Collective Job Contract and the company’s internal acts. NIS employees come from more than 10 countries around the world, and the company sees this diversity as an opportunity to develop and exchange the best ideas and experiences. However, diversity is also a challenge that needs to be actively addressed.
In order to prevent discrimination, NIS has been seriously and systematically dealing with issues relating to the position of women and gender equality principles. Thus, this oil giant is among the 1,800 companies in the world, which are signatories to the seven women empowerment principles of the United Nations. In this way, NIS also contributes to fulfilling the UN Sustainable Development Goals in the segments of gender equality and labour law.
NIS has introduced special benefits for parents, such as a day off on child’s first day at elementary school and the gradual return of mothers from maternity leave
What does this practically mean for employees? NIS has introduced special benefits for parents, such as a day off on child’s first day at elementary school and the gradual return of mothers from maternity leave. This means, among other things, that employees are allowed to work four hours a day for the first two working weeks, after returning from maternity leave, and to be paid as if they were working full time.
Furthermore, the company has been continuously working and investing in encouraging girls and women to engage in jobs that are traditionally perceived as male. In this way, NIS gives everyone the same chance, breaks taboos and actively encourages members of the fairer sex to pursue their dreams. These activities have contributed to enviable results. Thus, for example, in 2019, 366 engineers were hired to work for NIS, including as many as 96 women. One of them is Mirjana Popov, an industrial management engineer who was hired for the position of the stationary and rotary equipment mechanic at the Pančevo Oil Refinery. Her job is extremely attractive and demanding because is working on the Bottom of the Barrel Plant, which was recently commissioned.
This plant is worth over 300 million euro, and Mirjana’s job is very responsible. She is the only female mechanic in NIS and her job, after being informed about certain irregularities in the equipment’s work, is to check and detect the problem in detail, and then suggest how to solve it. Also, the mechanic provides everything that is needed, including the supply of materials, to eliminate the defect or to keep the equipment at a satisfactory level. Although she is the only woman in this position, she believes that great progress has been made, because twenty years ago, male employees found it harder to accept women at work, while now the situation is completely different. “Male employees used to struggle with accepting women at work, but, considering that I am patient and persistent, we have built a quality relationship over time. They always try to help me and take over from me, if needed, even though that amount of affability sometimes bothers me, “says Mirjana and adds that she would not change her team for anything in the world.
NIS states that adhering to high standards of corporate responsibility and commitment to the business ethics principles, behaving in accordance with the law and respecting human and labour rights will remain one of the priorities in the company’s business.