Ecom Express is a nationwide express delivery business in India. We first invested in the company in 2019. During our pre-investment due diligence, we identified an opportunity to work with the company to increase women in employment: female representation in its workforce was below average for the sector, at only 2 per cent.
First, we helped identify the gaps, opportunities and benefits of developing a more diverse workforce. This information was then used to develop a gender strategy and timebound gender action plan, which included actions such as gender sensitisation training, integrating gender considerations into hiring practices, employee surveys, and training and mentoring programmes for women.
female employment at Ecom Express when we first invested in the company
Despite some setbacks due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the firm implemented steps from the gender action plan that have materially increased gender diversity across the workforce. Between 2019 and 2022, female representation across the workforce more than doubled, with a net increase of over 1,900 jobs for women.
As a result of this work, Ecom Express is benefitting from improved business performance. Hubs with larger numbers of female employees perform better, including a reduction in absenteeism and theft. The firm also recently launched several all-women delivery centres, which are operating at a higher efficiency level than all-male or majority-male centres. Following the success of the gender action plan, Ecom Express is now considering other forms of diversity and is rolling out a similar plan for LGBTQ hiring.
We work with businesses in our portfolio to help them put in place interventions and action plans that close gaps between women and men, and support business growth. Find out more about our recent work in our Annual Review 2021: Foundations for the future