Keolis, a pioneer in gender equality

21st February 2021

Keolis places its employees on an equal footing in all countries, men and women alike. This commitment is enshrined in its human resources policy and its approach in terms of corporate social responsibility (CSR), which can be seen in commitments and specific actions recognised by certification at international level.


Beyond simple compliance with local regulations in the countries where Keolis operates, the Group has been committed to gender equality in the workplace for over ten years by:

  • Promoting diversity in its recruitment processes

  • Enhancing the employability of Keolis employees

  • Ensuring a level playing field in professional development and career management

  • Helping to change attitudes towards women's roles in the public transport sector and its professions

  • Developing local partnerships  

  • Greater awareness of reconciling the work-life balance

This engagement, which is part of the company's approach in terms of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), is recognised and certified by the GEEIS (Gender Equality European & International Standard) label, of which the Group is a pioneer: in 2016, Keolis was the first public transport operator in the world to obtain this certification.


Created in 2010 by Arborus, an endowment fund created by major groups to promote gender equality worldwide, the GEEIS label recognises companies with a proactive approach to equality in the workplace. It is issued by Bureau Veritas, a world leader in business certification, following audits that assess companies' commitments and actions based on nine criteria (gender diversity, salary and management practices, social dialogue, propagation of a common culture, etc.). Certification is granted for a period of four years with intermediate follow-up audits after two years. As in the fields of quality, environment or health and safety at work, GEEIS certification enables a company to incorporate its gender equality policy within a process of continuous improvement.


In 2020, 15 follow-up audits were carried out by Bureau Veritas in the countries where the Group is present. In total, nine countries and their subsidiaries have the GEEIS label: Australia, Belgium, Canada, France, India, the Netherlands, Norway, the United Kingdom and the United States. In the space of four years, the number of employees covered by professional equality certification has increased tenfold. At present, 87% of employees work in an entity that has been certified as an equal opportunities employer.

Some real examples of action taken by the subsidiaries

In the field, Keolis subsidiaries' commitment to gender equality can be seen in several initiatives carried out in partnership with associations and NGOs.

  • In Melbourne, Australia, Yarra Trams sponsors women from disadvantaged backgrounds who want to study in the transport sector.

  • In Boston, USA, Keolis Commuter Services is a member of a network that offers scholarships and job opportunities in the transport sector to young women.

  • In London, UK and in Melbourne, mentoring initiatives support the professional development of young women in the sector.

  • In Ile de France, Keolis Versailles trains women to become drivers in partnership with the FACE foundation.

  • In France, all subsidiaries subjected to the gender equality in the workplace index published their scores on 1 March 2020 with an average score of 91.9/100. Nine of them obtained a score of 100/100.


Keolis now wants to reach a new milestone by aiming for the GEEIS Diversity certification, already obtained by its Norwegian subsidiary in 2020. Based on the same principle as the GEEIS certification, this label was launched by Arborus in 2017 and extends company evaluations to other criteria, such as age, disability, social or ethnic origin and religion. By aiming for this new certification, the Group wants to enhance and strengthen its commitments in terms of inclusiveness and the fight against all forms of discrimination that guide its human resources practices and processes throughout the world.

"We are enthusiastically developing approaches and a working environment that will allow us to obtain the GEEIS certification. This demonstrates Keolis Canada's firm commitment to the highest international standards in managing diversity that is representative of our communities, both in recruitment and in all aspects of operations management."

Paul d'Anjou, Director of Human Resources Keolis Canada

"The renewal of the GEEIS certification for Keolis South-East Regional Management recognises our total commitment to equality, both in the process of approaching and integrating future employees and in terms of the day-to-day development of our employees and career progression."

Aurore Wepierre, Human Resources Manager, Provence Sector