Fonterra is teaming up with non-profit group TupuToa on a new internship programme for Māori and Pasifika graduates.
At the end of 2018, three tertiary students heading into their last year of study will join Fonterra for a twelve-week paid internship, where they will be exposed to different parts of the business and mentored by senior leaders.
Managing Director People and Culture Joanne Fair says the new partnership will help broaden the talent source for future leaders and increase diversity of thought.
“Māori and Pasifika make up 22 per cent of the general population but are currently underrepresented in New Zealand’s corporate workforce. We want to play our part in turning that around,” says Ms Fair.
“We’re passionate about growing our diverse talent pool which is why we’ve joined forces with TupuToa, who have a proven model for identifying and preparing Māori and Pasifika talent for professional careers.
“Embedding diversity and inclusion is a priority for Fonterra because it’s the right thing to do for our people and our communities, while also helping to drive better business performance.”
McKinsey research shows that diverse businesses outperform non-diverse businesses by 35 per cent and notes that diversity is crucial to fostering innovation.
TupuToa Chief Executive Anne Fitisemanu says internships provided in partnership with organisations like Fonterra are crucial to help build a new generation of Māori and Pasifika business leaders.
“As one of New Zealand’s largest employers, Fonterra joining our network is a sign of confidence in TupuToa’s ability to impact the corporate landscape of Aotearoa,” says Ms Fitisemanu.
TupuToa was established just over two years ago and by 2020 aims to be providing support to almost 300 Māori and Pasifika interns and 300 emerging leaders annually.
The TupuToa interns at Fonterra will be based in the Auckland and Waikato offices, gaining work experience in Sales and Marketing, Accounting and Finance, Supply Chain and Human Resource roles.
The programme is part of Fonterra’s wider efforts to promote diversity and inclusion. The Co-operative is a member of New Zealand’s Champions for Change network and was recognised at the Deloitte Top 200 Awards last year for winning the Diversity and Inclusion Leadership Award.