To effect real change in the diversity of your team, it goes without saying that one of the aspects of your business you need to address is your recruitment strategy. Organisations need to consider their job specs and ads as well as be able to evidence a fair job search process. Without data and reporting this is simply not possible. In the first instance, you would need a base level of the profile of your leadership teams and then be able to evidence through your search process that it has been fair in considering all applicants including those from ethnically or underrepresented gender groups. Without data and evidence, you run the risk of existing in an echo chamber where you make the right noises but cannot show in real terms the active steps, you have taken to address diversity within your team. The difficulty comes in ambiguity over what organisations are obliged to do and a lack of understanding about the relationship between a diverse leadership team and accelerated business performance.
Legal obligation on diversity reporting
The challenge for HR and talent acquisition leaders in all industries, not just digital and tech is that there is currently no single act governing diversity recruitment. There is some legislation however on pay gap reporting and currently, this stipulates companies with a headcount of 250 more must comply with regulations on gender pay gap reporting. Whilst several UK companies are voluntarily disclosing their ethnicity pay data, as it stands there is no mandatory ethnicity pay gap reporting. There is an indication that change in the law is coming but clearly, regulations do not currently encompass smaller businesses. Acknowledging a pay gap doesn’t suggest that action will be taken to close it, however, companies are expected to adhere to statutes such as the Equality Act 2010.
Equality Act 2010
The Equality Act was passed for the purpose of protecting individuals from discrimination from businesses, organisations, and employers. The protected characteristics under this act are as follows:
- Pregnancy and maternity
- Religion or beliefs
- Gender reassignment
- Marriage and civil partnership
- Sex and sexual orientation
If employers only show awareness of this statute without developing real strategies for shifting their recruitment policies and the shape of their leadership, they stand to lose out on an opportunity for real change. There is a wealth of evidence that shows through data and reporting companies can change their leadership team and outperform other less diverse businesses.
How data supports your diversity recruitment strategy
You cannot bring about change without understanding where you are at any given point. Data allows you visibility of your business but often those responsible for talent acquisition are concerned they are not doing enough or the right things towards a diverse recruitment strategy. How you word your job spec and adverts and carry out your job search needs clear evidence that you have fairly approached diversity and specifically gender and ethnically underrepresented groups. In-depth analytics and diversity data pre, during and post search to allow you to make informed hiring decisions and effect change.