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Recrutiment & Employment Confederation

This International Women's Day, how are you going to make a difference as a recruitment leader?

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

Kate Shoesmith avatar

Written by Kate Shoesmith Deputy CEO

When you use a recruitment agency, two thirds of businesses report it increases both the diversity of the candidates they consider and hire. These are just some of the findings from our new report: Recruitment and recovery: how we can create a more productive and inclusive labour market.

The stats are backed up by the experiences of REC members up and down the country.  Pertemps have evidence that the service they provide to clients really opens up doors for a wide range of candidates. And Audeliss, an executive search firm dedicated to overcoming barriers, says 65% of the people they have placed since they were founded in 2011 are from diverse backgrounds.

This is important because, as ours and many other studies have shown, diverse boards make better business decisions and candidates want to be represented and work for employers who take diversity seriously.

Days like International Women's Day are not about telling the women in your life how amazing they are (although feel free, you have my full permission) but in our sector, are an opportunity to reflect on how increasing diversity when recruiting can help power the recovery - one of the key strands of our campaign #RecruitmentForRecovery.

So, what can you do to walk the talk? Here are some of our top tips:

  • Do you conduct a gender or ethnicity pay gap report? They can be useful, even for the smallest of businesses.  At the REC, we look at this gender pay annually even though we don't need to from a legal perspective because it gives us data on our recruitment and HR practices that we might be blind to otherwise. This year we will also do an ethnicity pay report.  If you provide a payroll for temps, it is likely you will fall within the threshold for gender pay reporting - the deadline for which has just been extended to October 2021.
  • Offer a recruitment consultancy service that takes inclusion seriously as it could put you head and shoulders above the competition.  According to our data, only 26% of businesses make use of anonymised CVs and just 20% of businesses have a diverse recruitment panel.  But when you ask candidates, 49% of them think anonymised CVs are an important tool in the recruitment process.
  • Talk to your team. Find out how they feel you are doing as a business on Diversity and Inclusion (D&I), and what they think you could do to improve your outreach to candidates and clients.  The only way you can fix an issue is if you know about it so don't avoid the conversation. Your employees will be grateful for the chance to share and they are often a source of innovative ideas too.

Find out more about Recruitment and recovery, and share your experiences of best practice in recruiting with diversity and inclusion in mind using #RecruitmentForRecovery.

Join our discussion around changing attitudes towards recruitment

Join Neil Carberry on Tuesday 30 March at 12.30pm alongside author, speaker and facilitator, Katrina Collier, and founder of The Recruitment Network, James Osborne, for an interactive discussion on how we can influence and change the attitude towards recruitment and support the UK’s recovery.  Sign up here

Podcast: The role of recruiters in enabling more diversity and inclusion across the industry

We spoke to Carmen Watson, Chair of Pertemps Network Group on how recruitment business owners can enable more diversity and inclusion as an industry, and further drive the UK’s productivity. Tune in to listen to Carmen's full discussion with REC CEO Neil Carberry.