At IPL, we are committed to being an inclusive and accessible organisation through the development of a culture that embraces diversity. We believe that making opportunities for the contributions of a diverse workforce has benefits for our employees, our communities and our business, and can help us grow, remain relevant and be competitive.

Our employees range in age and gender and come from many different cultures, traditions and lifestyles. It is the diversity of our people that makes our company a great place to work. IPL benefits from this variety of perspectives and ideas, experience and capabilities, all of which lead to a greater opportunity for innovation and a better workplace. Diversity at IPL is led by the Executive Team, championed by our MD & CEO, and supported by the Company’s Human Resources function. The Board maintains oversight and responsibility for the Diversity Policy and the development and implementation by management of the Diversity strategy. The Diversity strategy includes three principles which were established to provide guidance for the Company’s Diversity strategy and its relevant policies, programs and initiatives:


• Respecting our differences

• Shaping our future organisation

• Building a flexible organisation


Respecting our differences is critical to ensuring that our work places will be free of discrimination and harassment and inclusive of all people, regardless of differences. Shaping our future organisation means IPL is continually developing a more diverse workforce, creating business sustainability and strength. We also offer workplace flexibility by providing opportunities for working arrangements that accommodate the needs of the Company while balancing the diverse needs of its people at different stages in their careers and lives. 

In order to progress our Diversity Strategy, this year the following initiatives were undertaken:


• Our Workplace Gender Equality Agency Report was endorsed as fully compliant by the WGEA, as in previous years. The purpose of the report is to provide an analysis of gender pay equity for IPL’s Australian operations, allowing us to implement strategies to address any identified issues. For more detail, see our Corporate Governance Statement;

• We continued the Manager co-program for the leaders of female employees who are involved in the ‘My Potential’ Program. This co-program is specifically designed to enable leaders to support and coach our female employees;

• We used key talent management metrics and our Talent and Succession Planning process to improve gender diversity within our Senior Management Roles by 2 percent for the second year in a row;

• Our 2016 intake of IPL Australian Manufacturing Graduates completed their second year. Participants included an Indigenous Australian and 100% were female;

• We launched the IPL Family and Domestic Violence policy to provide support for our employees in 2016. In 2017 this was cascaded through the business from leaders and was promoted during White Ribbon Day in 2017;

• We joined Diversity City Careers. DCC is the only online job platform where employers policies and procedures are pre-screened to ensure they support women’s careers;

• We continued to facilitate Indigenous cultural awareness for our employees through online learning, direct engagement with traditional owners, cultural surveys and participation in events such as Reconciliation Week and NAIDOC Week. In addition, we worked in partnership with Traditional Indigenous Custodians to produce a cultural induction video for our largest operational site at Phosphate Hill;

• We continued our involvement with organisations such as the National Association of Women (NAWO), the Australian Women in Resources Alliance (AWRA) and Diversity Council Australia (DCA), which provide IPL with support and resources to attract, retain and develop female talent specific to our industry, and forged a new collaboration with Austmine to support the ‘Women in STEM: METS Career Pathway Program’; and  

• As part of the Chief Executive Officer’s and IPL’s commitment to the Victorian Male Champions of Change, we participated in the Everyday Sexism Project.


IPL’s My Potential program is run across Australia and the Americas. My Potential has been specifically developed to support female employees to progress and thrive in their careers.


Using our Talent Metrics, we tracked the progress of female employees who participated in the program and saw an increase in both promotions and role enhancement in comparison to non-participants. Considering the positive results and overwhelmingly positive feedback from the program participants, this program has continued throughout 2017 for women across the middle and senior management levels within the Company.


We recognise that female employees can face actual and perceived challenges to career development and progression which are not immediately apparent to their leaders. Last year we piloted a co-program for leaders who manage high potential female employees involved in the My Potential program. The co-program helps leaders to gain insights and coaching skills to assist their female team members in overcoming some of the challenges they face, and aims to build our leaders’ capability to support female employees within their teams and across IPL.

Case Study: 

IPL’s Michelle Keegan wins Exceptional Women in Resources Award 


In July 2017, the Minerals Council of Australia (MCA) held its first Victorian Women in Resources Awards to recognise the exceptional achievement of women in the Victorian resources sector across all occupations. IPL’s Vice President of Strategy and Nitrogen, Dyno Nobel Asia Pacific, Michelle Keegan was awarded Victoria’s Exceptional Woman in Resources Award in recognition of her overall career success, long-time commitment to community service and her work to increase gender diversity in the minerals industry globally for over 15 years. This prestigious award specifically recognises leadership skills, resilience, methods of overcoming barriers and seeking out and accepting new responsibilities and challenges. Since starting out as a mining engineer in Kalgoorlie, Perth, Michelle has worked in senior roles in value chain, commercial management, and business strategy and innovation technology, which have exposed her to both technical and non-technical roles in the industry.


Along with three other Victorian winners of separate awards, Michelle then went on to represent Victoria as a finalist in the Women in Resources National Awards (WIRNA) in Tasmania in August where she was awarded a special Industry Achievement Award in recognition for her career success, work to advance gender diversity in four jurisdictions and long-standing commitment to community service. During this second awards ceremony Michelle was described as an active participant in many aspects of the industry, including as an active member of various women in mining groups around the country. She was recognised for breaking down barriers throughout her career, and being a great role model and quiet achiever who gets things done in her own way. Congratulations on your fantastic achievements, Michelle!


Australian Indigenous Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP)


In 2015 the IPL Board approved our first Reconciliation Action Plan, which was also endorsed by Reconciliation Australia. The RAP was launched in 2016 and provides us with a framework to outline our vision for reconciliation, and it is also a public commitment to implementing and measuring practical actions that build respectful relationships and create opportunities for Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. The RAP will be reviewed in 2019.


IPL has identified five organisational program investment areas and has committed to undertaking a significant body of work across these areas, developing the Australian Indigenous Employment Strategy and the Australian Indigenous Relations Policy. Each business and operational group is responsible for identifying local engagement and employment needs and opportunities and working towards improving engagement and employment outcomes for First Australian Peoples as set out under the five program investment areas.


As an organisation, we are committed to working in partnership with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities, other keys stakeholders and government agencies to deliver the goals set out in this plan. We aim to find the most innovative and efficient solutions to our challenges by exploring opportunities within the industry, partnering in other stakeholder initiatives, seeking out opportunities across both the private and public sector. 


By working collaboratively and implementing the initiatives outlined in the RAP, IPL will continue to work towards reconciliation in Australia.

Case Study: IPL’s Davina Shearer wins Indigenous Advocacy Award


At the Queensland Resources Council (QRC) fourth annual Indigenous Awards in August 2017, IPL was recognised in two of the six categories for their significant contribution to increasing Indigenous participation in the sector. IPL's Davina Shearer, Diversity and Inclusion Adviser, shared the Indigenous Advocacy Award for exceptional leadership in indigenous inclusion with Glencore’s William Blackley.


Congratulations to Davina and William on their prestigious achievements!


IPL also nominated EJ Garrett from Jetzak Media who won the Exceptional Indigenous Business category for his work in producing an induction video to enhance employees understanding of the cultural significance of IPL’s Phosphate Hill site. Jetzak Media involved both Yulluna Traditional Owners and employees at the site to collaborative in the making of the video.