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Tuesday, 14 September 2021 11:41

HESTA, Girls of Impact campaign to attract young women to career in financial services Featured

By Staff Writer
Lisa Samuels, HESTA Chief Experience Officer Lisa Samuels, HESTA Chief Experience Officer

Industry superannuation fund HESTA is collaborating with social enterprise Girls of Impact in a move aimed at encouraging more young women to consider a career in financial services.

The collaboration will see the $64 billion fund work with Girls of Impact to highlight career opportunities and pathways in financial services where women are historically underrepresented - including in areas such as risk and compliance, digital and technology and investments.

“HESTA has built a strong, inclusive and diverse culture where our people get to do amazing work that’s really making a difference for our members,” Chief Experience Officer Lisa Samuels said.

“Financial services can offer a wonderfully rewarding career. We want to share the experiences and cutting-edge work our people are doing every day that simply wouldn’t be available in other industries.”

More than 80% of HESTA members are women and Samuels says improving gender diversity in under-represented sectors like financials services can financially benefit members.

“We strongly believe that more diverse and inclusive teams have better decision making, which can lead to stronger long-term performance,” Samuels said.

“We’ve certainly seen this at HESTA, and we’re encouraging a focus on gender diversity in our industry and among our partners because we want our members to benefit from this performance edge.”

HESTA says it has a long-term strategy to develop a pipeline of talent in financial services and to encourage more women to pursue careers in the sector.

This latest collaboration with Girls of Impact follows on from HESTA’s partnership with Future IM/PACT, an industry initiative aimed at attracting more diverse talent into investment teams, which is supported by a HESTA Internship Program.

HESTA announced that it is also set to pilot a Returnship Program to encourage, experienced mature-aged workers to retrain and return to the workforce in areas of skills shortage like tech, digital and data science.

Girls of Impact CEO Kate Bushell said partnering with HESTA would help build talent pipelines in non-traditional sectors for women entering the workforce.

"We want to see more girls explore underestimated careers and industries such as funds management and superannuation,” Bushell said.

“This collaboration with HESTA is so crucial because we need more women in decision-making roles, especially in financial services, where investment decisions can impact people’s financial futures and the Australian economy."

Bushell said the collaboration would showcase the wide range of career opportunities available to women in financial services and the ability to make a real difference.

“The superannuation industry is a great career pathway for young women to explore as they can be and invest in supporting positive change in our world,” said Bushell. 

Samuels said working at HESTA meant you were “part of something much bigger”.

“Our members in health and community services do so much for so many in our community and it’s a real privilege to support them to have a better financial future,” Samuels said.

“To achieve this for our members we need to be thinking big about how we can make a difference on huge systemic challenges like climate change and gender equality because these issues impact our members.

“A lot of people at HESTA find they’re doing some of the best work of their careers that’s helping improve outcomes for our members and supporting a healthier and fairer community.”

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