At Woolworths Group, we recognise the value our team’s diversity brings to our business, and our customers. As one of Australia’s largest employers, we believe that creating a safe and inclusive workplace – where diversity in all its forms is valued, and every team member can be their best self – is critical to creating better experiences together for a better tomorrow.

Our Inclusion Strategy currently focuses on creating equity and belonging for people with lived experience across the following five pillars of diversity; Gender Equity, LGBTQ+ Inclusion, First Nations Inclusion, Disability Inclusion, and Cultural Diversity. We recognise that people often have intersectional lives and therefore may have lived experience across multiple pillars of our strategy. We are focused on celebrating diversity, building organisational capability and promoting career pathways for diverse talent.

Our strategy is reinforced by our Code of Conduct, which sets out the expectation for all our team members and reinforces our zero-tolerance policy on gender-based harassment, racism, discrimination, sexual harrassment and bullying.

Our respect for people is at the heart of how we care for our teams and how we serve our customers and communities. Our Code of Conduct is available here so anyone from our business or outside our business can see these commitments and expectations.

We have also highlighted our commitment to Woolworths Group being a workplace that is free from racism. Any form of racism towards team members, customers, suppliers or others will not be tolerated or accepted. A key part of this commitment is eliminating racism in all of its forms and challenging the attitudes that lead to it. This is also an important step in creating an inclusive workplace that embraces and promotes diversity, as we are a diverse team that reflects the communities we serve across Australia, New Zealand and Asia.

Flexibility has always been important to us and we recognise that our diverse teams will have differing needs when it comes to flexibility and ways of working. We support our team to discuss their flexible work needs with their leaders. With over 190,000 team members, Woolworths Group has varied flexible work options depending upon the roles and personal circumstances of our team members.


We strive for a culture of inclusion, where team members of all genders are valued and have a voice, equitable access to opportunities and a sense of belonging. One of the ways that we continue to live our purpose is through our dedication to gender parity and inclusion. We are proud to have been awarded the Workplace Gender Equality Agency’s Employer of Choice for Gender Equality (EOCGE) citation in 2021, the first major food retailer to achieve this. The EOCGE citation is designed to encourage, recognise and promote active commitment to achieving gender equity in Australian workplaces. 

We are committed to creating an environment that recognises and values all team member talent equally. Our people ambition towards gender equity is to achieve gender‑balanced leadership teams 40:40:20 ​​by 2025. This ratio is about aiming for gender diversity in workplace leadership, be it senior leadership teams, or on the Board, and allows for natural flow into and out of the organisation. In F22, our senior leadership was 39% women, a 2% increase on F21. We are committed to pay parity and maintain less than 1% difference in gender pay in like-for-life roles.

In November 2020, we became signatories to the UN Women’s Empowerment Principles (WEPs), which offer guidance to businesses promoting gender equity and women’s empowerment in the workplace, marketplace and community. As part of the WEPs community, Woolworths Group, from the top down, is committed to working collaboratively within multi‑stakeholder networks to foster business practices that empower women.

Family is an important part of our team members’ lives, our customers’ lives and our community.  At Woolworths Group, we want to make things better for families - including supporting our team members while they are growing their families. In Australia we provide 12 weeks paid parental leave for our team members who are primary carers and four weeks of paid leave for our team members who are secondary carers. We also provide all our permanent team members and some casual team members with unpaid parental leave entitlements in Australia. Permanent team members will have access to paid parental leave from their first day of employment. Superannuation will also be paid on all paid and unpaid leave for up to 12 months. We recognise the important role paid and unpaid parental leave plays in maintaining gender equity and supporting all of our team and so we are regularly reviewing our parental leave entitlements and looking at how we can improve the support provided to our team. 

In 2018, Woolworths Group introduced our Gender Affirmation Policy and supporting tools. By recognising the complexity and challenges team members may face during their gender affirmation journey, and improving the support we provide, we seek to show real care, and positively impact team member experience, across the Group. On the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, Interphobia and Transphobia 2021, we announced the incorporation of a paid leave component into our existing policy. Team members will receive up to two weeks’ paid, and two weeks’ unpaid leave, to support them as they take the necessary steps to affirm their gender, a first for Australian and New Zealand retailers.


Since 2018, Woolworths has partnered with Fujitsu to build Mini Woolies stores and support the educational experiences of young Australians with disabilities. 

Each store replicates all aspects of a Woolworths supermarket, with baskets for fresh food, shelving for groceries, ticketing, signage and Woolworths branded uniforms. At check out, grocery items are scanned using fully operational Fujitsu registers, too. 

In five years, the Mini Woolies program has grown to over 42 locations, offering more than 2,400 young Australians the opportunity to engage in hands-on learning experiences and practise skills in numeracy, literacy and communication to help build their confidence and independence for the future.

The Mini Woolies program aims to support the educational experiences of young Australians with disabilities. By creating safe and engaging learning environments to practise real world skills in numeracy, literacy and communication, we hope that students can build their confidence and independence as they prepare for future experiences in the wider community. 

In partnership with Fujitsu, each Mini Woolies store replicates the Woolworths supermarket experience - just on a smaller scale. The stores are stocked with a range of groceries, fitted with baskets, shelving, ticketing, signage and Woolworths branded uniforms. At check out, grocery items are scanned using fully operational Fujitsu registers.



We’re proud of the significant progress in LGBTQ+ inclusion we’ve made at Woolworths Group over the past six years. Our journey has been recognised by the Australian Workplace Equality Index (AWEI), which in 2021, awarded us Gold Employer Status for LGBTQ+ workplace inclusion for the fourth consecutive year, making us a Platinum Qualifying business, the first retail business to do so. Our Proud Committee is now helping us work towards acheiving AWEI Platinum Employer Status in 2023. 

In New Zealand, Countdown achieved the Rainbow Tick accreditation for the fourth year running. Countdown continues their partnership with RainbowYOUTH, providing donations and raising funds through customers’ giving to support Aotearoa’s queer, gender diverse, takatāpui (Māori term for LGBTQ+) and intersex youth.


We care deeply about our teams, customers and communities, and believe we all have a role to play in reconciliation, healing our relationship with, and closing the gap for, our First Nations peoples. As the Independent Panel Review into the proposal to develop a new Dan Murphy’s store in Darwin demonstrated, we have not always lived up to the intent of our purpose or our leadership role. It is clear there is much more for us to do.

With almost 5,000 of our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, we are deeply committed to listening, learning and growing as part of our reconciliation journey. 


Our team represents many different cultures, bringing diversity of experience, thought and ideas to work with us everyday. We celebrate cultural days of significance, to help our team explore and experience other cultures.

In an effort to reflect the culturally diverse communities we serve, Woolworths in partnership with Community Corporate Pty Ltd has provided employment to over 200 refugees, since F18, in Woolworths Supermarkets, Metro Food Stores and Customer Fulfilment Centres across NSW, Vic, Qld, SA and WA.

We’re very proud to be the first Australian company to join the Tent Partnership for Refugees - a global network committed to improving the livelihoods of refugees by integrating them into core business operations.

As the nation’s largest private employer, we want to help refugees build new, secure and fulfilling lives in Australia. We also believe our teams should reflect the culturally diverse communities we serve.

In New Zealand, Countdown is committed to not only seeing more Māori and Pasifika team take on leadership roles at level 3 and above across its business, but also celebrating the diverse people that make up its 20,000 strong team. 

Celebrating the indigenous Māori culture has been an important focus for Countdown. In recent years, Countdown has worked to incorporate more te reo Māori (Māori language) across its stores and customer communications, to celebrate key events including Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori (Māori Language Week) and Matariki, and to encourage its support office team to take part in Māori language classes. 

More broadly, Countdown is working with a wide range of partners to support and encourage to create positive employment outcomes for all Kiwis. In F22, we partnered with:

  • Bread Collective, to provide training, support and employment to Aotearoa’s refugee community by supporting them to become qualified bakers. 
  • The Food and Grocery Council, to raise awareness of food retail and FMCG careers and offer an internship programme.
  • MyMahi, a digital platform that supports student learning, wellbeing, and future pathways with direct access to Countdown opportunities.

For our progress against this goal, see our 2022 Sustainability Report. For more information on our metrics, see our 2022 Sustainability Report Appendix.