May 19, 2020

Uber and Intact head towards partnership—How will this change your riding experience?

Canada
Uber
Technology
Leadership
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2 min
Uber and Intact head towards partnership—How will this change your riding experience?

Whether or not you’ve taken an Uber ride, you’ve most likely heard of the famous company that originated in San Francisco. Now available internationally, the company is planning to make a deal with Intact Financial Corporation, creating the first auto insurance in Canada that will be specifically tailored to protect drivers, and by extension, passengers.

But will this new proposal change your ride-sharing experience?

RELATED TOPIC: The great Uber debate—Do taxis have the right-of-way?  

Each company recently released its own separate press release, with Uber saying, “This plan will be the first of its kind designed exclusively for the ride-sharing industry in Canada.”

Intact executive Louis Gagnon added, “With the growing popularity of the sharing and on-demand economy, we are adapting our product range to offer innovative solutions to meet the changing needs of consumers.”

While particular details regarding the partnerships have yet to be revealed, the question remains: how (or will) this change the way you ride?

As of now, it doesn’t seem that anything will change when you order an Uber. Of course, this could change once the deal becomes finalized and details are officially released.

Intact is currently awaiting approval from provincial insurance regulators for its plan before going public. The company’s intention is to offer insurance under the company’s two main brands: Intact Insurance and belairdirect.

RELATED TOPIC: Uber delivers food in Canada—Is this the new business model to follow?

It’s believed that this partnership is taking place in hopes of filling a gap in the industry that currently leaves both passengers and ride-sharing drivers vulnerable. Though Uber has stated that drivers are covered by a commercial policy for up to $5 million worth of bodily injuries and property damage, commercial drivers are still legally required to have their own insurance to cover various claims.

It’s not a stretch to wonder if the price for taking an Uber will increase once the insurance policy goes into effect. However, we won’t know until the deal is officially signed, sealed and delivered.  

Regardless or not if fares increase, it would seem that this new plan is a way to offer full protection for all parties involved in this riding experience. And shouldn’t safety, despite price, be a top priority?

RELATED TOPIC: Will Uber drive on? Canada’s debacle with the famous driving service

[SOURCE: CBC News

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Jun 12, 2021

How changing your company's software code can prevent bias

Deltek
diversity
softwarecode
inclusivity
Lisa Roberts, Senior Director ...
3 min
Removing biased terminology from software can help organisations create a more inclusive culture, argues Lisa Roberts, Senior Director of HR at Deltek

Two-third of tech professionals believe organizations aren’t doing enough to address racial inequality. After all, many companies will just hire a DEI consultant, have a few training sessions and call it a day. 

Wanting to take a unique yet impactful approach to DEI, Deltek, the leading global provider of software and solutions for project-based businesses, took a look at  and removed all exclusive terminology in their software code. By removing terms such as ‘master’ and ‘blacklist’ from company coding, Deltek is working to ensure that diversity and inclusion are woven into every aspect of their organization. 

Business Chief North America talks to Lisa Roberts, Senior Director of HR and Leader of Diversity & Inclusion at Deltek to find out more.

Why should businesses today care about removing company bias within their software code?  

We know that words can have a profound impact on people and leave a lasting impression. Many of the words that have been used in a technology environment were created many years ago, and today those words can be harmful to our customers and employees. Businesses should use words that will leave a positive impact and help create a more inclusive culture in their organization

What impact can exclusive terms have on employees? 

Exclusive terms can have a significant impact on employees. It starts with the words we use in our job postings to describe the responsibilities in the position and of course, we also see this in our software code and other areas of the business. Exclusive terminology can be hurtful, and even make employees feel unwelcome. That can impact a person’s desire to join the team, stay at a company, or ultimately decide to leave. All of these critical actions impact the bottom line to the organization.    

Please explain how Deltek has removed bias terminology from its software code

Deltek’s engineering team has removed biased terminology from our products, as well as from our documentation. The terms we focused on first that were easy to identify include blacklist, whitelist, and master/slave relationships in data architecture. We have also made some progress in removing gendered language, such as changing he and she to they in some documentation, as well as heteronormative language. We see this most commonly in pick lists that ask to identify someone as your husband or wife. The work is not done, but we are proud of how far we’ve come with this exercise!

What steps is Deltek taking to ensure biased terminology doesn’t end up in its code in the future?

What we are doing at Deltek, and what other organizations can do, is to put accountability on employees to recognize when this is happening – if you see something, say something! We also listen to feedback our customers give us and have heard their feedback on this topic. Those are both very reactive things of course, but we are also proactive. We have created guidance that identifies words that are more inclusive and also just good practice for communicating in a way that includes and respects others.

What advice would you give to other HR leaders who are looking to enhance DEI efforts within company technology? 

My simple advice is to start with what makes sense to your organization and culture. Doing nothing is worse than doing something. And one of the best places to start is by acknowledging this is not just an HR initiative. Every employee owns the success of D&I efforts, and employees want to help the organization be better. For example, removing bias terminology was an action initiated by our Engineering and Product Strategy teams at Deltek, not HR. You can solicit the voices of employees by asking for feedback in engagement surveys, focus groups, and town halls. We hear great recommendations from employees and take those opportunities to improve. 

 

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