Race

ABOUT BUSINESS IN THE COMMUNITY’S
CAMPAIGN FOR RACE EQUALITY IN THE WORKPLACE

Race, equity, diversity and inclusion

The Race at Work campaign was established by HRH The Prince of Wales in 1995 with the support of key business leaders.

Action by employers could boost the UK economy and lead to increased productivity and returns in the workplace1, 2. However, these potential gains are being stifled by the barriers faced by ethnically diverse talent in the workplace.

Business in the Community (BITC) is committed to empowering employers to tap into this economic potential by accelerating change for ethnically diverse employees. We work with our network of private and public sector partners to offer tailored practical advice and share new insights to drive long-term change. We are also calling on the government to mandate ethnicity pay gap reporting.

acceleratE change for ethnically
diverse employees

Key facts

  • Race equality in the UK will potentially bring a £24 billion per year boost to the UK economy – 1.3 %
    GDP. That is £481 million a week3 .
  • Organisations with more diverse teams have 36% better financial returns4.
  • Only 1 in 16 people at senior levels in the private and public sector are from an ethnic minority background5.

BITC’s Race at Work 2021 Scorecard Report, produced in partnership with YouGov found that

  • the number of organisations voluntarily capturing their ethnicity pay gap data has increased from 11% in 2018 to 19% in 2021
  • the number of senior leaders as executive sponsors at the top table promoting equality, equity, fairness and inclusion has increased from 32% in 2015 and 33% in 2018 to 44% in 2021
  • access to mentorship and sponsorship has reduced for Black, Asian, Mixed Race and other ethnically diverse people since 2018. We are calling on leaders and employers to engage in two-way mentoring models and active sponsorship.

make race equality a priority

About the Race at Work Charter

All organisations want to recruit from the widest pool of talent and help successful applicants progress. It is key to future productivity and performance. Ethnic minority staff still encounter significant disparities in employment and progression6. The government-sponsored Race in the workplace: The McGregor-Smith Review found that greater progress and positive outcomes are needed to ensure all organisations benefit from the wealth of diverse talent on offer.

BITC’s Race at Work 2018: The Scorecard Report was published one year after the McGregor-Smith Review. It looked at how UK employers were performing against the recommendations outlined in the review. The findings led Business in the Community (BITC) to create the Race at Work Charter, five calls to action for organisations committed to improving equality of opportunity in the workplace. In 2021 the Charter has expanded to include allyship and inclusive supply chain commitments.

Seven key actions to amplify your commitment to improving quality of opportunity in the workplace.

1. Appoint an Executive Sponsor for race.

Executive Sponsors for race provide visible leadership on race and ethnicity in their organisations. They drive actions such as setting targets for ethnically diverse representation, briefing recruitment agencies and supporting mentorship and sponsorship.

Resources to take action.

Available to BITC members and organisations with advisory days in race*

* If you think you should have access to these resources but do not, please contact your Relationship Manager or Inclusion Adviser.

2. Capture ethnicity data and publicise progress.

Capturing ethnicity data is important for establishing a baseline to measure progress. It is a crucial step towards an organisation reporting on ethnicity pay gaps and tracking performance against targets.

The BITC Race at Work 2018 Scorecard Report, in collaboration with YouGov, found that employees said only 11% of employers were currently capturing ethnicity and pay data. Without this important indicator, businesses will not be able to diagnose and take action to deal with their ethnicity pay gaps.

Resources to take action.

3. Commit at board level to zero tolerance of harassment and bullying.

Employers should commit to actions that foster inclusion. 25% of ethnically diverse employees reported that they had witnessed or experienced racial harassment or bullying from managers7. 31% of ethnically diverse employees said that they had witnessed or experienced racial harassment or bullying from customers, clients, service users and contractors8. Leaders at the top commit to tackling racial harassment and bullying with internal and external stakeholders.

Resources to take action.

4. Make equity, diversity and inclusion the responsibility of all leaders and managers.

Actions should include setting performance objectives for leaders and managers with a responsibility to promote conscious inclusion and fair access to opportunity for all staff. Take action to build inclusion, belonging and include the voices of Black, Asian, Mixed Race and other ethnically diverse employees in the workplace and around key decision-making tables.

Resources to take action.

5. Take action that supports Black, Asian, Mixed Race and other ethnically diverse employee career progression.

Actions should include embedding two-way mentoring and sponsorship in their organisations.

Resources to take action.

6. Support race inclusion allies in the workplace.

Provide support for inclusion to allies to promote race equality in teams, at work and within their communities. 26% of White employees say that they would like more support from their employers9.

Resources to take action.

Available to BITC members and organisations with advisory days in race*

* If you think you should have access to these resources but do not, please contact your Relationship Manager or Inclusion Adviser.

7. Include Black, Asian, Mixed Race and other ethnically diverse-led enterprise owners in supply chains.

Employers should ensure Black-owned businesses and enterprises are part of their supply chains, monitoring timely payment and contract value. These actions will contribute to creating role models for young people and the wider community, as well as economic inclusion.

Resources to take action.

MAKE THE COMMITMENT

TOGETHER WE ARE STRONGER

GLOBAL GOALS
TOGETHER WE CAN CHANGE THE WORLD

LEARN MORE

How Business in the Community is working to create a
skilled and inclusive workforce for today and tomorrow

References
  1. Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, (2017) Race in the workplace: The McGregor-Smith Review
  2. McKinsey & Company, (2020) Diversity Wins: How Inclusion Matters (2020)
  3. Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, (2017) Race in the workplace: The McGregor-Smith Review
  4. McKinsey & Company, (2020) Diversity Wins: How Inclusion Matters
  5. Business in the Community, (2015) Race at Work 2015 Report
  6. Business in the Community, (2021) Race at Work 2021 Scorecard Report
  7. Business in the Community, (2018) Race at Work 2018: The Scorecard Report
  8. Business in the Community, (2018) Race at Work 2018: The Scorecard Report
  9. Business in the Community, (2021) Race at Work 2021 Scorecard Report