Jan 11, 2023
Jan 19, 2023

Equality, Diversity & Inclusion - Article 3

Equality, Diversity & Inclusion (ED&I) is already a headline feature on many HR agendas and is a subject that is gathering pace as everyone learns and experiences more on the subject. It is increasingly a key consideration in planning new hires, and the strength of our ED&I offering has helped us to secure many assignments and deliver a positive result.

We started our series of articles on ED&I last year – bringing together all of the knowledge that we have gained from our work with clients, with candidates, with the REC and our research. Our main objective for 2023 is to keep talking about it, make it an increasingly “safe” subject for all to discuss, and to contribute towards making the Yorkshire & East Midlands business regions increasingly diverse and inclusive.

Over the past few months, we have been looking at the evolution of technology that has been specifically designed to boost ED&I and the benefits for employers. We have been very surprised with how many products there are, how quickly this market has grown and just how much momentum for growth there is. The next step for many employers will not be to invest in any of these products, but their existence and their purpose can all be part of the ongoing learning and understanding process at the very least.

Our research for our own service and to advise our clients has looked at over 40 different products over the past 6 months – covering data analytics, candidate attraction and assessment;

DATA MANAGEMENT AND ANALYTICS

Good ED&I strategies start with data on the current workforce. HR and Talent Management systems have been able to provide some data on this for many years. There are a growing number of additional platforms that can provide employers with a dashboard of their teams’ diversity through engaging directly with the employees and then highlighting the areas of strength and development. The majority can cover gender, age, ethnicity, LGBTQ+, disability, neurodiversity, and other areas.

Having this data will allow every employer to gain a deeper understanding of their people, which should lead to actions that strengthen retention and attraction strategies. There will often be some quick wins (for example, highlighting specific departments that may have gaps, biases or issues), but there will always be an opportunity to create stronger long term people strategies.

There is a benefit to having this data collected by a third party, such as Pulsely and Diversio, especially when they can then lead onto the important next stage of making recommendations and using their other analytical tools to provide benchmarks to compare to.

IMPROVING CANDIDATE ATTRACTION

Skills shortages and the fact that there are more jobs than candidates have been well publicised over the past year. Some of the latest data from the ONS highlighted that one third of UK private sector companies entered 2023 with a shortage of workers.

Diversity Jobs Group is a suite of nine ED&I job boards launched in 2021 – Their growth has come on the back of an increase in the number or ED&I Managers and strategies for UK employers, but also as more employers learn that positive ED&I is not just a compliance tick-box action, but a way of finding and engaging a wider candidate pool. Their platform claims to reach out more effectively to women and ethnic minority groups.

ADDRESSING THE UNCONSCIOUS BIAS IN INTERVIEWS

Video interviewing has had a major impact on recruitment. Pratap Partnership are the biggest advocates of face-to-face interviews, but the logistical benefits of first interviews over video platforms have made many processes a lot more efficient at the front end of the process. (Our senior management and executive campaigns now average over 25 candidate interviews with our team, as opposed to 15 a few years ago).

HireVue has grown with a partnership with the global Science of Diversity and Inclusion Initiative (SODI) to drive more equity in hiring in the past two years. One of their features is to make it easy to interview candidates anywhere in the world and offering interviews in 30 different languages - opening the door to a far greater diversity of workforce for those employers who can facilitate this. An article in Recruiter magazine last September featured one of HireVue’s client’s, the Co-operative Bank, who advised that one of the major benefits they highlighted from using HireVue was in creating a totally fair, consistent and open interview process – one that removed the risk of any unconscious bias and had allowed the bank to achieve a 50/50 split in gender hiring.

JOB DESCRIPTIONS AND ADVERTS

We have been analysing job descriptions and writing adverts to ensure that there is a balance of feminine and masculine coded words for a long time.

There are now a vast number of software platforms that will assess and improve job descriptions and adverts to make the vacancies inclusive. Platforms such as datapeople and jobvite use AI, Data Analytics and the latest ED&I best practice techniques to help employers and recruiters achieve this on a large scale.

A FEW OF OUR THOUGHTS

Pratap Partnership is a business that is built around the capability and the history of our people – this comes with a vast network of candidates for our clients. We could be a successful recruitment business with this feature alone, but that would not be enough to meet our own ethical standards, and the increasing expectations from employers.

People Strategies are evolving at the fastest rate in decades as the millennial generation grows into more leadership level positions, Covid-19 leaves its legacy on the world of work, and technology accelerates ever more quickly. It will be only a small number of employers who need to engage in all the platforms listed in this article, but it is really interesting to see how quickly this market is growing, how much more of a positive spotlight it is placing on ED&I for many employers, and perhaps gives us all a glimpse into the future!

Nik Pratap
Lorraine Pratap
Elise Walsh
Gillian McBride
Nicola Worrow
Joe Ingham
Amanda O’Neill
Karen Caswell
Dale Spink
Charlotte Morgan-Smith
Henry Clarkson
Gemma Hutchinson
Jess Lister
Lucy Miles

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