Meltwater announced the launched a new department within the Africa region; Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DE&I), further appointing Siphesihle Hlela as the company’s first Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DE&I) Director in the region.
The department will be responsible for accelerating the company’s vision of creating a more diverse, equitable and inclusive workplace by taking strategic steps leading to considerable change and transformation over time.
Matthew Barclay, Area Director at Meltwater for the India, Middle East and Africa (IMA) region, says, “I’m thrilled to congratulate Siphesihle Hlela to head up Meltwater Africa’s new DE&I Department. We are committed to supporting him in pioneering this move and look forward to seeing the impact that this department will have on the global organisation.”
With 7 years experience of working across the Technology, SaaS, and Digital industries, Hlela has expert knowledge in building and expanding data strategies, developing positive, long-lasting relationships with CXOs to meet evolving needs, and works closely with Marketing to drive initiatives for sustainable business relationships with a broad range of clients across Africa.
With his extensive background in developing and implementing business strategies, Hlela is ready to further Meltwater’s position as a leader in innovation and bring about meaningful change within the region’s new Diversity, Equity and Inclusion department.
As a dynamic and dedicated business professional, Hlela is passionate about developing people, leading from the front and using his expert knowledge to bring about authentic change in African markets. His focus will be on supporting a diverse workforce that brings about innovation and growth, which are crucial for the company to meet our customers’ needs in the Africa region.
“I look forward to playing an active role in progressing Meltwater’s DE&I efforts across the African region, and ensuring that we stay true to our commitment of creating a people-first environment that thrives in diversity and is truly inclusive across all levels of business,” says Hlela.
The announcement comes after Meltwater South Africa created the Employment Equity (EE) Forum, of which Hlela was a founding member and currently is the Chairperson. The forum serves as a consultative platform for encouraging diversity and inclusion as well as to promote equity in the workplace. In 2020, Meltwater also launched an EMEA Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) Council, where Hlela sits as the Africa representative, which aims to create a platform that actively collaborates on D&I initiatives, and provides a safe space for discussion, support and creativity across the Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) region.
More recently, Hlela spearheaded Meltwater’s first ever DE&I South Africa virtual summit on 22 June 2021. As DDEI, he will collaborate with leadership and management to identify, develop, and implement comprehensive strategies for recruiting, developing, retaining, and promoting underrepresented employees in South Africa.
“I embrace the role which drives our company’s efforts to support all diverse groups across the region and addresses opportunities to improve diversity, equity and inclusion issues at Meltwater”, says Hlela.