The importance of diversity and inclusion within business

TLC recently attended the Centre for Assessment’s launch of the new Diversity and Inclusion British Standard.

This is the first British Standard for Diversity and Inclusion and will provide business with a consistent framework to create and manage a diverse workforce.

It is well known that promoting and supporting diversity in the workplace is an important driver for successful business, and how vital it is to have an inclusive environment where employees feel able to achieve their potential.  During the launch, speakers outlined the benefits and challenges that businesses may face as they implement a more diverse workforce.

Diversity and inclusion – the benefits
Rosie Clarke, Rosie Clarke, Senior Inclusion and Diversity Consultant, Inclusive Employers “Inclusive businesses are more productive, have increased employee retention and attract more talent.”

Clarke listed further benefits as;

  • A more engaged workforce with higher efficacy
  • Competitive advantage
  • Greater innovation
  • Wider community engagement
  • Reduced employee absence
  • Less risk of losing staff
  • Reduced cost of recruitment

Dr Wilson Wong from CIPD discussed the wider implications of diversity and inclusion, stating that “everyone stands to benefit when we embrace and value the diversity of thoughts, ideas and ways of working that people from different backgrounds, experiences and identities bring to an organisation”.  He posits that it helps people to reach their full potential whilst tackling the under-utilisation of skills. In this way it has the potential to improve decision-making, boost engagement, and enables businesses to better meet the needs of a diverse customer base.

Diversity and inclusion – the challenges
Clarke discussed the challenges that businesses may face when implementing diversity in the workforce. She said that on the whole awareness amongst senior level staff is low thereby creating difficulty with recruiting board level engagement and support. Reasons for this could be due to diversity and inclusion initiatives being perceived as tick box exercises rather than something that aligns to their business objectives.

Another challenge is that there is no ‘end or specific goal’. Your diversity and inclusion programme is a constant process of monitoring and evaluation. This presents a challenge and a change of thinking.

TLC specialises in helping clients attract and retain the right people for their business through recruitment campaigns and engagement activities. We see the new British Standard for Diversity and Inclusion as really exciting. It will give business a greater set of tools to build a more successful, diverse and inclusive workforce. And by having a common framework, there will be an increase in best practice across all business. We look forward to seeing more businesses adopt the new British Standard and reaping the benefits of implementing it.

 

Jon Scott

CONTRIBUTOR

Jon Scott

Creative Thinker & Founder

Jon is Creative Thinker & Founder of Thinking loud & clear. Jon helps build strong brands that create positive change. That positive change might be increasing membership, increasing customer loyalty or gaining a competitive advantage.

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