Bureau Veritas, a world leader in testing, inspections and certification services, is continually on a passionate drive to fulfil its mission of shaping a world of trust through its unrivalled expertise, independent and worldwide presence to benefit society. The company is fast gaining ground on its sustainability trajectory to meet its 2025 ambitions towards transforming the world we live in. Committed to creating better workplaces, a cleaner environment and improved business practices, Bureau Veritas (BV) enjoys an enviable reputation for being a company that walks the talk.
2025 ambitions and gender equalityWith a strong commitment to achieving its 2025 objective of leading the Testing, Inspections and Certification evolution towards sustainable growth in Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG), BV invests heavily in People and Culture, Organization and Governance and Innovation and Technology. Human capital enjoys the utmost regard, and the company focuses on attracting the best talent to develop its next generations and ultimately build its culture across the globe – these factors are critical to accelerating the 2025 strategic direction of the company. Organisational development is strongly underpinned by a robust Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) commitment, a living extension of the company’s mission to create a world where trust and truth are respected and exercised in daily life. Gender equality is intrinsic to this commitment to change lives and thus ensure a fairer world. International teams with broad-based skills and diverse profiles, creating a more representative organization which is fast on track to achieve its goals. In line with its commitment and policy on inclusion, Bureau Veritas has aligned to the SDG of Gender Equality, setting itself ambitious targets for 2025 to reach 35% of female representation in leadership positions, which is supported through several initiatives.
Global and Africa statistics to dateBureau Veritas has made strides in its commitment to a more efficient and gender balanced operation, with increasing numbers of women in management and executive leadership, with robust plans in place to balance the corporate landscape even more. Today, on a global level, 69% of employees are male, whilst some 31% are female against an ambition of 35% by 2025. Women are present in a range of roles from executive leadership to subject matter experts in engineering, artificial intelligence, nuclear innovation, digital technology, human resources, accounting, marketing, and communications, legal and a host of alternative specialties. In Africa, women make up some 28% of the human talent; with some 28% of these women being female senior decision-makers. Dr Beatriz Magalhaes, Country Chief Executive Mozambique: “Study hard, that is the most solid foundation you can create for yourself, it will help you with the confidence you require to focus on your achievements and not that of others. Secondly, choose the right partner on your journey, one that will add and not subtract,” she advises young woman. Education and job creation lie close to Magalhaes’ heart, and she has made it her business to impact the communities around her by driving social responsibility. Brazilian born Beatriz Magalhaes is the Chief Country Executive of BV Mozambique and has been in her role for two years. With a PhD in Structural Biology from the University College, London (UCL); Dr Magalhaes joined BV in 2016 to “reinvent herself”. Initially a consultant, she was drawn to the company values of truth and transparency, which aligned closely to her personal value system. Her career has been steeped in science, having been a university lecturer in Brazil before founding a green technology startup in her home country. A family woman at heart, with her mother firmly placed as her role model, she is motivated by the pleasure of a job well done. Key to her many accomplishments are adaptability and a keen understanding of a host of cultures, having grown up in various countries around the world and speaking several languages. Always putting her team first is part of her leadership style and is the secret ingredient to her success as a woman and business leader. The simple joy of encouraging a team to their own personal success motivates and inspires her. Caring for her staff is an invaluable characteristic that lies close to her heart, as evidenced by the impact of one of her recent leaders. This humble, competent, and ambitious scientist enjoys working in a global business and looks forward to feeding her curiosity by working more closely with new technologies, artificial intelligence, and new innovations in the future. When asked what words of advice she would offer her younger self, she commented: “Don’t be afraid of taking leaps, of reinventing yourself if needs be. You need to first trust yourself, trust what drives you and head on straight.” Dr Swarupa Deshpande, Oil & Gas Market Leader Africa: Dr Swarupa Deshpande, Oil & Gas Market Leader
“Transparency is vital, be committed to your objective and work collaboratively. We need to constantly upgrade our knowledge and technology prowess for innovative solutions. It is important to be firmly rooted whilst building strong teams and external networks with partners, clients, and stakeholders. There are no short cuts to hard work and dedication; and no alternatives for patience and compassion,” she says, sharing the key ingredients to her success as a woman and business leader.Dr Swarupa Deshpande spearheads Oil & Gas in Africa, one of BV’s largest markets and has also spearheaded the team in South Asia. The soft-spoken Indian-born Deshpande has a PhD in Oil & Gas Management, an MBA, and a diploma in International Business Management. She was initially drawn to the company some 16 years ago because of its strict testing and quality control measures, it’s absolute values of truth and transparency; collaborative and highly ethical culture. She is inspired by being able to use her abilities to help contribute towards a better society, building an improved living world through BV’s quality, health, safety, and environmental service support to the crucial energy sector to maintain the natural balance of the globe. BV’s ability to use technology, digital innovations, and sustainability solutions to improve the wellbeing of the industrial sector of the world further propels her to making a marked difference. She remains inspired by her Human Resources Director, as a dynamic and smart female role model with strong leadership qualities and team building abilities, with the innate ability to connect great minds. Bureau Veritas’ sectors range from infrastructure, agriculture, high end technology, to molecular biology, marine, oil & gas, aviation, engineering, artificial intelligence, nuclear energy, and power. It is this wide spectrum that draws her to the business and keeps her curious, learning and tapping into various geographies and cultures. Given a magic wand, she would like to see the pace of knowledge transfer increase to every team member to expand their personal development, improving quality of life. Deshpande is most proud of carving a place for herself in the traditionally male driven oil & gas sector and securing many large contracts through excellent technical knowledge whilst always abiding by a high level of ethical practices. She encourages younger women who look up to her as a prominent engineer in a competitive environment: “Develop a deep understanding of your field, be bold and straight when giving your opinion, demand flexibility and specific needs as a woman and mother and be confident to lead.” Continue to challenge, meet global targets, and equalize the landscape As BV advances towards supporting our clients in creating cities of tomorrow: smarter, greener, and more human, it will persist in tackling its ESG goals with pride of place. The company will pursue a safer, fairer, and more sustainable economic system. Shaping a world of trust is crucial to the social fabric and values of the company, ensuring transparency and credibility as it encourages innovation, proactivity, and agility, keeping a watchful eye on women in the workplace whilst driving a client-centric organization. Gender equality targets will continue to climb as the company achieves its current objectives and then expedites even more ambitious goals. Bertrand Martin – Senior Vice President Africa “We will keep the capacity to continually challenge ourselves, to go beyond the comfort zone to innovate. We will embrace technology to develop new services and new ways to deliver the service. We will continue to be catalysts for positive social change, to be part of the social compact that seeks to make a tangible difference to the lives of families and communities that we work and live in. We will ensure we support girls and younger women to secure a place at university to study the much-needed STEM subjects – to create illustrious careers for themselves and ultimately earn a seat at the boardroom table – this will form part of our legacy for generations to come.” Bureau Veritas enjoys a geographical presence in 140 countries and unrivalled experience in certification processes, coupled with in-depth knowledge of local specifications and regulations are considerable assets the company provides to its clients, public authorities, and society as a whole.