HomeWhat's TrendingEmpowering Tech Women: Cognizant's 'Shakti' & Nasscom Forge Diversity Path in India'

Empowering Tech Women: Cognizant’s ‘Shakti’ & Nasscom Forge Diversity Path in India’

Cognizant, a global leader in professional services, unveiled ‘Shakti,’ a groundbreaking program aimed at empowering women in technology and propelling their career growth. This initiative, launched in collaboration with Nasscom, India’s prominent IT industry association, signifies a strategic move towards fostering diversity and inclusion (D&I) across the tech sector in the country.

Exceeding industry norms, Cognizant boasts a nearly 40% female workforce in India, outstripping the average of 36%. Notably, half of its 13 Indian centres have surpassed the 40% mark, underscoring the company’s dedication to achieving gender parity.

Shakti operates through a multifaceted approach, catering to women’s talent development at various career stages:

  • RISE offers leadership development training for mid-level female associates in India
  • Propel, a global leadership program, accelerates the careers of senior women through coaching and mentoring
  • Returnship, a 12-week paid upskilling initiative, aids women in re-entering the workforce after career breaks
  • The ‘Be Gritty’ program furnishes fresh campus hires with training to foster a growth mindset.

Cognizant fosters a culture of inclusion by engaging male allies through an allyship program, aiming to address challenges faced by women in the workplace. Furthermore, the company equips associates with inclusive leadership skills and operates the Women Empowered Affinity Group, comprising 50,000 members and allies in India, focused on enhancing work experiences for women and driving business impact. The Inspirational Stories Campaign highlights successful women at Cognizant to inspire others and demonstrate the program’s efficacy.

In a collaborative effort with Nasscom, Cognizant endeavours to set and prioritise D&I best practices within India’s tech sector. Both organisations plan to share insights, policies, and progress measurement strategies, thereby ensuring the success of this joint initiative.

Recognising the pivotal role of leadership, Cognizant actively involves its leaders in embedding D&I behaviours within the organisation. By implementing and evaluating Shakti’s initiatives, the company ensures long-term success and a lasting impact on the industry.

Shakti signifies a significant stride toward Cognizant’s vision of an inclusive workplace, enabling women to flourish and realise their full potential. Through its collaboration with Nasscom, Cognizant aims to act as a catalyst for positive change in India’s tech landscape, envisioning a more equitable and empowered future for all.

According to Vakilsearch experts, Cognizant’s ‘Shakti’ and nasscom’s collaboration to promote gender diversity in the tech sector not only amplifies opportunities for women but also sets a precedent for industry-wide inclusion. This alliance brings forth legal considerations regarding workforce policies, potentially influencing legislative reforms to foster a more equitable work environment.

Akash G Varadaraj