We have signed Business in the Community’s Race at Work Charter to demonstrate our long term commitment to racial equality. The charter includes five calls to action to ensure ethnic minority employees are represented at all levels.
We are, or will be taking, the following actions to fulfil this commitment and want to be transparent about what we are doing to encourage others to come with us on this journey.
Appoint an Executive Sponsor for race
Our Chief People Officer and Executive Board Member Susana Berlevy is our new Diversity Board Chair and sponsor of race. Two partners, Leena Savjani and Charankamal Dhaliwal are co-leaders of IM Respect.
Capture ethnicity data and publicise progress
We’ve made a good start, capturing 70% of our colleagues’ ethnicity data and published our first ethnicity pay gap report in 2020, which is favourable by -2.3 towards our BAME colleagues.
In addition to this we survey all colleagues each year in our Great Place to Work Survey and although diversity is our highest scoring area (87%) will be reviewing the results through a lens of race (and other strands of diversity) to work towards ensuring all colleagues have the same experience of being part of our team. We are using a range of different diversity data gathered from within our business to monitor our ‘organisational health’, using leading and lagging indicators. This will be monitored on a monthly basis by our Executive Team within our Balanced Score Card. Our ambition is to use data from this dashboard to set targets in relation to the recruitment, retention and progression of BAME colleagues.
Commit at Board level to zero tolerance of harassment and bullying
We have a strict zero tolerance approach to bullying and harassment and offer advice to our clients on all types of workplace discrimination. To take this a step further in 2020 we intend to launch a ‘Call it Out’ campaign to help colleagues understand the different types of harassment and bullying that can take place, including racism, biases, micro aggressions and advice on being an active bystander.
Make clear that supporting equality in the workplace is the responsibility of all leaders and managers
Our 2020 objectives require all colleagues to help drive our diversity and inclusion agenda forwards. Specifically leaders and managers are expected to act as role models in their behaviours, undertake training, drive on going conversations within their teams, clients and wider communities championing equality, diversity and inclusion.
Take action that supports ethnic minority career progression
To achieve this we will continue to provide unconscious bias training workshops to line managers and by sending reminders each time they trigger a recruitment process. We will also continue to use blind recruitment for our trainee intake. As well as increasing our use of the apprentice levy and championing alternative routes into careers in law, we will continue to target diversity networks within universities to ensure a diverse mix of candidates apply.
In 2020 BITC will be helping us deliver a mentoring programme for BAME colleagues, as well training all of those with recruitment responsibilities on inclusive recruitment practices. We will be using data to explore how diversity impacts our promotions rounds and performance reviews and educating managers about biases during the process.
We will also continue our mentoring programmes with BITC which offer support to BAME pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds to prepare for life after education.