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Recruiting for Difference

Alice Hulme, our Client Engagement Director and our Senior Talent Acquisition, Hannah Elcock attend the Bristol Women in Business Charter event “Recruiting for Difference”.

With lots of insights to take away, Alice has highlighted the main talking points in this month’s insights.

Last week Hannah and I attend the Bristol Women in Business Charter’s event “Recruiting for Difference”. As new signatory’s of the charter, we’re please to have these events and resources available to us to learn and network with fellow peers of the charter.

The Bristol Women in Business Charter was launched in 2019 to make a tangible difference to women who work in Bristol. The Charter empowers female colleagues to achieve their full potential by supporting companies in making a commitment to gender equality.

The Recruiting for Difference event focused on the importance of diversity and inclusion in the recruitment process. We learnt about a range of insights and strategies for success which we look forward to carrying forward for our own organisation and our clients.

Our key takeaways from the event included:

  • Recruitment is a people process, and it needs to be aligned to people's needs. Throughout the application and interview process, it is important to be unique to individual requirements. Co-producing interview formats with underrepresented groups to make it as inclusive as possible, also co-producing equalities forms when you are evaluating your processes.

  • Language needs to keep up with societal shifts: it is important to avoid “othering” and be sensitive to the terms you use. If you aren't sure, just ask. An example is replacing ethnic minority, with global ethnic majority or underrepresented groups.

  • The fear of getting it wrong stops you from getting it right: be OK with and acknowledge discomfort. Understand that there are no easy wins and don’t be defensive when you receive feedback.

  • Your business needs to understand the value of diversity: ED&I commitments are a cultural move for the business. It is important to grow, talk, and evolve. Engage key stakeholders, build a business case, and empower your champions. Consider implementing additions in your office like quiet rooms or secluded areas for prayer or breastfeeding.

  • Transparency about flexibility: it is important to be open about your people's policies. An effective way to attract talent is to “lift the veil” on these during the interview process. Are there any improvements you can make on flexibility, including shared parental leave and line manager guidance with menopause support.

  • Engagement not outreach: especially across STEM, we must eliminate systemic biases. Encouraging mentors and breaking down myths, but not glossing over the challenges faced to get to leadership.

  • Be an Ally: attending events, promoting policies internally and championing the message across staff is key to being an ally.

  • Consider implementing the Social Model of Disability.


Some useful links: