Equality And Diversity Management Programme At Barclays plc
Equality and Diversity Management Programme GAURAV SINGH
Barclays launched a ground-breaking Equality and Diversity programme, accompanied by the Barclays Charter for Equality and Diversity. This marked its commitment to making Barclays a beacon of enlightened equality and diversity policies and practices worldwide
The diversity strategy was based on a diversity and equality survey of 10,000 employees. Feedback from the survey pinpointed the need for action in four priority areas: building an inclusive culture, dealing within appropriate behaviours, merit-based recruitment, and work–life balance.
To ensure concerted progress towards this goal, the Group’s Executive Committee set four-year objectives in two particular areas: to double the number of women in the most senior positions from 11% to 22% to increase the number of people from ethnic minorities in the most senior positions from 0.6% to 3%. However, Barclays’ stance on equality and diversity did not rest on numerical representation. How employees felt was a critical measure for success in progressing equality and diversity.
Equality and Diversity Director leads a team of ten people to run the central programme. It has a properly allocated budget and is steered by the Global Diversity Council, who provide strategic guidance and monitor progress against plan. Members of the Global Diversity Council includes four Executive Committee members. All Barclays business areas are required to report progress to the Global Diversity Council, who in turn report to the board every six months.
To help progress diversity there is a seniordiversity champion for each of the following: gender – Head of Channel Transformation race – Chief Executive of Barclays Private Clients disability – Director of Community and Consumer Affairs sexual orientation – Chief Executive of Barclaycard age – Chief Information Officer
STRUCTURE Each diversity champion is supported by a member of the Equality and Diversity team, and there are taskforces of employee volunteers across the organisation who have an important influence on the diversity strategy and programme’s priorities.
Vital to the success of the diversityprogramme Communication Engagement Consultation
MANAGING DIVERSITY PRACTICE career development events for ethnic minority employees multi-faith rooms for staff a full policy review to ensure fair treatment in employee benefits, regardless of marital status or sexual orientation an extended retirement age 60 to 65 on a voluntary basis active recruitment of people aged over 60 an online job register to assist employees to find a job-share partner a career break scheme for all employees.
MANAGING DIVERSITY PRACTICE A pilot recruitment and a career development event for employees with disabilities. providing training on interview technique and IT skills to help meet the Barclays benchmark. a car policy enhanced to adapt cars for senior managers with disabilities. regular work–life balance seminars. a sexual orientation network, Spectrum.
MANAGING DIVERSITY PRACTICE In addition, Barclays have taken full advantage of the many external networks, voluntary and diversity initiatives to make diversity progress such as Race for Opportunity, The Employers’ Forum on Disability and Opportunity Now. They are a Government Age Positive Champion and a Stone wall diversity champion, and are involved in the CRE Business Advisory Group.
BUSINESS BENEFITS The rapid globalisation and diversification of financial service providers makes a focus on managing diversity imperative, with intense competition to recruit and retain the best people, develop new approaches, understand increasingly complex and diverse cultures, and drive down costs. New sources of innovation, insight and resource are harnessed as a central part of the Group’s strategy for success through actively managing diversity. It makes economic sense for both society and the company if they can help maximise the number of people from different backgrounds in employment. The presence of people with different backgrounds in the workforce has also challenged stereotypical thinking and overcome barriers. Revenues have increased by improving services to deliver to a more diverse customer base through tapping into the knowledge of people with non- traditional backgrounds. Managing diversity has helped to broaden knowledge about age, gender, ethnicity and disability in ways that have improved staff morale and retention rates