Dr. Sheikha Shamma bint Mohammed Al Nahyan has made a special visit to Etihad’s Global Business Service Solutions (GBSS) facility in Al Ain.
Today’s visit was part of Etihad Aviation Group’s (EAG) activities to mark International Women’s Day, recognised internationally on 8 March each year to celebrate the achievements of women. This year’s theme is “Be Bold for Change.”
Dr. Sheikha Shamma Al Nahyan was taken on a tour of the GBSS centre by Saada Al Taei, Senior Manager – Service Delivery. The visit concluded in a majlis area where Her Highness spoke to some of the staff and met other members of EAG.
“The GBSS is a great example of how a company can empower women, said Dr. Sheikha Shamma Al Nahyan. The facility offers a wide range of training and career development opportunities in the community of Al Ain. It was refreshing to see such a high percentage of female staff who have become role models for Emirati women in the workforce. I am proud of the women’s contribution to society and their efforts to develop their careers,” added Dr. Sheikha Shamma Al Nahyan.
The GBSS is a dedicated revenue accounting centre of excellence and was officially opened in March of last year. It was set up to engage the local Emirati workforce, particularly women, who make up 95% of the staff.
Hareb Almuhairy, Senior Vice President, Corporate and International Affairs at Etihad Aviation Group, said: “We are honoured that Dr. Sheikha Shamma Al Nahyan has taken the time to visit the GBSS and see first-hand the impressive work of staff. Their contribution is very important to the efficiency of Etihad Airways, our equity partners and right across EAG, while the centre brings long term economic benefits to Al Ain and the wider emirate of Abu Dhabi.”
A total of 280 women work at the GBSS, which follows existing programmes to attract UAE nationals, such as cadet pilots, engineers, graduate managers and the all-female Al Ain Contact Centre.
Amna al Ameri, who joined GBSS as a Business Partner, said she was attracted to Etihad because of the importance it places on empowerment. “Etihad Airways is one of the top aviation companies in the world. Its initiatives to develop employees captured my attention. These opportunities are rare and I find myself very lucky to be working for a global company in my hometown.”
EAG employs 9,752 women across 126 nationalities, representing 36% of the overall 26,762 staff. UAE nationals represent the largest female group with 1,542 women, followed by 918 women from India, 792 from the Philippines, 587 Romanian and 579 hailing from the UK. Other prominent female nationalities are Moroccans, Serbians, Ukrainians, Australians and Italians. Amongst the women furthest from their home countries are eight Mexicans, 106 Brazilians and one from the tiny South Pacific island of Tonga, 14,938 kilometres from EAG’S home of Abu Dhabi.
The vast majority of female employees work for Etihad Airways based in the UAE. However, the women are spread far and wide in terms of departments and locations. Female staff can be found amongst the flight deck crew, cabin crew, at Etihad Airways Engineering, Etihad Cargo, Etihad Global Loyalty Company and Etihad Airport
Services Catering. In their roles, the women are dispersed globally, as far afield as China, Vietnam, Kazakhstan, Uganda, Brazil and Canada.
EAG’s other activities to mark International Woman’s Day include a series of inspirational guest speakers and workshops to inspire and motivate staff and encourage conversations on female empowerment.