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Diverse Management Team

Diversity: How the Ftse 100 Is Doing

Posted on February 07, 2018

Surveying human resources and diversity and innovation (D&I) practitioners from 24 of the hundred biggest listed companies in the UK, the Delivering Diversity report from CMI and the British Academy of Management found that some employers are paying little attention to the lack of black, asian and minority ethnic (BAME) employees climbing the ranks of their organisation.

The research suggest that some firms are reluctant to invest to improve their ethnic diversity in decision-making jobs, potentially limiting their own business performance.

At management level, 54% of HR practitioners in the study reported that less than 5% of their senior management positions are filled by a someone from an ethnic minority. Furthermore, 83% report that this is also the case at boardroom level, showing a major deficiency in BAME leaders and decision-makers in the country’s largest listed companies.

A boost for the bottom-line, an improved understanding of a diverse customer base, benefits to the business culture, and access to different perspectives are just a few reasons British businesses can significantly benefit from investing in ethnic diversity.

The study also revealed an admittance by many of the respondents that the level of support for BAME staff across all levels needs substantial improvement. None of the respondents to the study rated their company’s record as very good for creating a diverse management pipeline for BAME people, with only a further 17% deeming their company’s current performance on race as good. Nearly half of respondents (46%) rated it as average and two-fifths (38%) rated performance as fairly poor or very poor.

By comparison, 84% of HR and D&I personnel said gender diversity in the management pipeline at their organisation is very good or fairly good (21% and 63%, respectively), while no one surveyed felt gender diversity was either poor or fairly poor at their FTSE 100 workplace.

Lack of role models, data and commitment to BAME employees

In the past decade, FTSE 100 companies have made important strides in boosting the number of female employees in senior positions. The Government-backed Davies Review, launched in 2010, helped the FTSE 100 reach a milestone of 25% of board positions being filled by women in 2015.

Therefore, for many employers investing in diversity in their ranks isn’t new, and researchers suggest that this experience can help bosses apply solutions to tackling the challenge of boosting the career prospects of their BAME talent.

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