The CIPD and Omni are calling on organisations to be more strategic about attracting and recruiting diverse candidates to fill senior roles – and to broaden their outreach.
This is after a survey of 660 employers revealed that a quarter of employers make no effort to attract and recruit more diverse candidates for top-level jobs.
They are also suggesting that employers should consider targeting their recruitment strategies to include people with characteristics that are under-represented in these roles.
The CIPD and Omni report ‘Resourcing and Talent Planning Survey 2020’ does show organisations had more success improving diversity more broadly, with two in five (41%) recruiting a more diverse workforce in the last year.
However, the report suggests employers could be making even more progress, as less than a quarter (23%) go beyond basic legislative requirements on protected characteristics with regards to their recruitment and selection processes. For example, only:
- 37% monitor their recruitment to obtain data on protected characteristics
- 27% remove certain biographical details from initial selection process
- 33% ensure they have a diverse interview panel or hiring team
- 23% check recruitment tests used are valid, reliable and objective.
Claire McCartney, Senior Resourcing and Inclusion Adviser at the CIPD, the professional body for HR and people development, said, “The findings of this report suggest that improvements in workforce diversity have happened by accident rather than design. We could be making quicker and considerable progress with a more strategic approach.
“It’s particularly disappointing to find that a quarter of organisations are not doing anything to improve boardroom diversity. Not only is this where the problem is most acute, as the Parker Review and other research shows, but achieving change here would have maximum impact. We need to have a broad range of diverse people in decision-making roles and be role models for future talent.
Louise Shaw, Director Resourcing Transformation at Omni RMS, added, “Despite some positive findings, it’s disappointing that little progress has been made since 2017. The #BlackLivesMatter protests brought the racial inequalities within our societies and workplaces into sharp focus, and we believe organisations must be held accountable for ensuring greater racial and, of course, broader diversity at the very top.
“Recruiting diverse talent is only the start and organisations need to be reporting externally on their true effectiveness by measuring inclusive engagement, retention, and career development. This is what will give organisations full visibility of what is and isn’t working so they can make informed changes and realise the business benefits.”
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