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How to boost inclusion in your finance business
The finance sector’s reputation as male-dominated and the culture that has evolved as a result of this is still causing a significant diversity imbalance for many organisations. The gender pay gap reporting has brought this issue to the forefront and is now high on the agenda for businesses in the UK. In fact, around 93% of our clients now actively seek advice on improving the diversity and inclusivity of their teams. The key point that arises during these discussions is where do you start?
Most organisations today have a much clearer understanding of the importance of diversity and inclusion in the workplace and are also wanting to better understand the candidate marketplace. The drive to attract a more diverse workforce in finance including women and people with a BAME background is a positive step in the right direction. However, those that have been the most successful are also working internally to become more inclusive in their culture and this is crucial to the longer-term success of any D&I strategy.
Supporting an inclusive culture
Although we are seeing a growing number of female talent coming into the sector, the challenge still remains when pushing for women at senior levels. We have previously explored the idea that many women disregard themselves for supervisor or leadership roles which is why increased support from businesses is crucial.
Without an inclusive culture, diversity is not sustainable. Businesses that recruit for diversity but don’t work on their internal culture often find that they very quickly lose this talent. Hiring people from diverse backgrounds and integrating them into a culture that doesn’t support them often results in these professionals becoming culturally ostracised.
There are so many areas of diversity to consider in businesses. While gender is at the forefront of organisations’ agendas there is also work to be done in terms of LGBT, BAME, and disability to name a few. A truly inclusive culture allows all people from diverse backgrounds to come into work and openly be themselves. It is empathetic and supportive, which means that everyone’s ideas are heard and respected. An organisation that cares about its people – their wellbeing, their career, their home lives – and how those people feel working for them, is empathetic which is key to increase inclusivity and diversity.
Promoting your inclusive working culture to attract talent
If your business is looking to begin the D&I journey, we would suggest striving to tackle the gender gaps within your teams as a good place to start. Recognising the areas in which your business is especially imbalanced is also important. Whether you are lacking women in more senior roles or minority groups in specific areas of the department. There are a few key ways to help support diverse groups. Once you have developed these, it is all about sharing these messages externally.
Build awareness and educate people on how to be more inclusive at work. Provide training and development across all levels of the business. Introduce a mentoring programme and establish internal networks to support your diverse network then celebrate those successes – both internally and externally. Share the successes of your business when diversity milestones are achieved and celebrate the career successes of the individuals that work in your organisation.
Changing a long-standing perception of a business or an industry is difficult, which is why brand messaging is key. To have a brand that is appealing to a diverse pool of candidates or one that people with a diverse background are able to identify with should be the goal. The diversity of your business needs to be reflected throughout all aspects of an individual’s interaction with your brand – as a customer, candidate, and employee.
In the recruitment process specifically, job descriptions should use language that does not exclude minority groups, interviews should be carried out by a varied and diverse group of people to highlight that, and onboarding processes should ensure that individuals are given the level of support they need to thrive in their new roles.
At Page Personnel, we strive to provide a diverse pool of exceptional talent that would thrive in the positions you are hiring for. With over 40 years of experience in recruitment and a network of over 1000 consultants recruiting right across the UK, we are well placed to provide unique insights into the marketplace that you are recruiting in.
If you would like more information about how we can support your D&I initiatives, or you would like to talk to someone about recruiting professionals in the finance sector, please get in touch with one of our specialist recruitment consultants today.