Tech Talent Charter’s 2021 report: What’s right for UK companies to accept D&I?

Companies that have signed on to the Tech Talent Charter (TTC) diversity effort saw the number of tech roles reportedly held by women increase from 25% to 27% last year, and just found that minority representation is still around 6% higher than for the overall tech workforce in the UK.

Those data points are among the details included in the latest TTC document Diversity in Technology Report 2021. TTC is the UK’s leading diversity promotion non-profit organization; it measures the activities and progress being made towards the inclusion, equity and diversity of signatories.

That list of companies includes Spotify, Deliveroo, General Dynamics, Very Group and Marie Curie.

The 2021 report is the first to include ethnicity data that companies can choose to share this year. (Ethnicity reporting will be required in the future.) The underrepresentation rate of minorities in TTC Signatory organizations is 20% – higher than the UK tech workforce average. UK is 16%.

Ethnic minority workers make up around 11% of the UK’s vast workforce.

What works when it comes to D&I

According to Debbie Forster, CEO and co-founder of the nonprofit, when trying to determine what works best for companies looking to promote diving, TTC has taken the approach data-driven. Companies were asked not only about what they were doing, but also about what was not working and where still needed improvement.

Debuting in 2017, the group aims to help organizations in the field of technology offer best practices around diversity that can be shared. According to TTC’s 2021 report, there are at least 20 different interventions that are vital to diversification efforts.

While there’s no “single magic bullet and no single order for things to happen,” TTC is now starting to see patterns in how companies succeed, Forster said. For companies with the most gender and ethnically diverse tech workforces, efforts that have proven to be most successful include:

  • Build awareness of D&I’s efforts;
  • Establish D&I goals and metrics and hold managers/leaders accountable for their actions;
  • Use audit processes and systems to minimize bias;
  • Collect employee feedback / measure inclusion;
  • D&I training;
  • Payment for external D&I services.

The 2021 report is based on data from 580 institutions, a 162-year increase over the same period. TTC estimates its consortium represents around 15-16% of the UK’s current tech-skilled workforce, making it one of the largest and most up-to-date datasets of its kind – comparable to the Office of National Statistics dataset. Participating companies range from micro to super large, and include IT staff in 70 different industries. Tech workers surveyed are based in all 12 UK regions and 10% have adopted remote or non-location working.

In comments published with the report, Deloitte UK said it had updated its recruitment management training program to explicitly address racial bias and made changes to the hiring process. use his or her original profession.

“For example, based on research, we removed the late-stage presentation requirement, redesigned our assessment document, and introduced new candidate preparation guidance to ensure Da Black is not disadvantaged”, said Deloitte UK. was to close the conversion rate gap between Black colleagues and people of other ethnic backgrounds. “

In a separate comment, Unilever PLC said it wanted to “be at the forefront of using results-based, scientific approaches to address bias”.

Since 2018, Unilever has partnered with Iris Bohnet, a public policy researcher at Harvard University; That partnership led the company to come up with a metric called the Gender Appointment Rate (GAR). It is calculated as the total number of women appointed over a 5-year period, divided by the total number of men appointed.

“Providing line managers with a full picture of their five-year appointment decisions will increase their awareness and help them make unbiased choices next time,” says Unilever. next when the opportunity arises”.

The diving challenge is still on

Despite recent progress, Forster said there is still a lot of work to be done. One of the biggest problems facing the UK tech industry is the widening skills gap. While larger social and structural changes can help, individual companies also need to expand their recruitment pipeline beyond traditional routes into the industry.

In fact, attracting diverse talent amid a shortage of tech talent is a frequently reported concern among companies involved in TTC’s work.

The nonprofit’s primary focus in 2022 will be on how employers can use alternative routes to engage tech workers and make them a habit to work for multiple companies. more ty. The efforts come even as the industry faces a “Major Resignation,” making the battle for talent fierce.

(All IT related vacancies currently occupy 13% of all vacancies are working in the UK.)

An ongoing issue raised by TTC signatories in 2021 is the lack of diversity in senior positions. Forster said companies need to remember that, when it comes to diversity, it’s not just about attracting people; it’s also about making sure systems are in place to ensure that people from underrepresented backgrounds can transition into executive leadership roles.

In 2021, TTC cooperates with We Are Tech Women and Ipsos MORI to explore perceived barriers for women as they progress their careers, as well as to determine what’s important when looking for new roles. The top reason women change or stay in a job is salary, which means that companies that don’t address the gender pay gap will have a hard time retaining talent.

Companies like nonprofits or public sector companies that can’t offer competitive salaries can still do a lot to attract talent.

“It has the right managers, the right culture, offers clear promotion opportunities, is transparent and allows for flexible working,” she said. “Any company, whatever your size, wherever you are in the country, you can do it. And the business case is there. Bringing in talent makes you more money, losing talent will cost you.”

That’s why TTC’s effort is so important: once companies have real data on diversity, they can start using that data to understand where the problem is, how to target interventions and how to measure the impact of their efforts. They can then share the data with middle managers to build goals and accountability.

“All the pieces are out there,” she said. “We haven’t assembled the whole puzzle yet, but we’re starting to see the images come together.”

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc. Tech Talent Charter’s 2021 report: What’s right for UK companies to accept D&I?

Fry Electronics Team

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