Today is my last working day before the Christmas break. Each year seems to go by in a blur and this year in particular has been a busy year for us! We are proud of how we have built our inclusive culture as well as increasing a sense of belonging for all employees. We have also relished the opportunities to support our clients on their DEI strategies and plans.
We all know that DEI will continue to be a priority for many organisations in 2023 and it is increasingly important in the challenging global economic and social challenges that we face. So, what are the main priorities that organisations should be prioritising next year?
- Social Mobility - as you can see via the attached article (from the research conducted by the Bridge Group and KPMG), social class will continue to be the biggest barrier to career progression. The publishing of the Social Mobility Foundation Employer's index for 2022, serves to shine a light on those organisations who are doing well here, but it is clear that much more progress is required.
- Ethnicity - this will continue to be a priority for many organisations, particularly in delivering a more representative mix at leadership levels. It will be interesting to see whether we see many more organisations start to voluntarily report on their ethnicity pay gap reporting (in the UK).
- DEI data collection - this is a key requirement for all organisations to continue to better understand the diversity of their employees. It's not easy, especially for global organisations, but it's important that the right level of priority and resource is allocated here.
- Multi-generational workforces - as the supply of specific skills and expertise continues to be challenging for many organisations, the need to take a broader approach to hiring multi-generational workers will be more pressing. Businesses will need to adapt and be more flexible in how they attract, hire and retain older workers.
- Belonging - businesses are working hard to hire under-represented talent, I predict that we will see more focus on retention by prioritising inclusion and belonging.
- Internal Mobility - another lever that organisations should be deploying to retain under-represented talent. Instead of hiring for the role on offer, businesses should be engaging in career progression discussions with all candidates, to increase the level of commitment and "stickiness" with the business.
- Employee Resource Groups - these will continue to build employee engagement, inclusion and belonging, as well as helping to facilitate recruitment of under-represented talent. Investing in the development of ERG leaders and rewarding them appropriately should be prioritised.
- Intersectionality - having a strategy across all protected characteristics is necessary, but taking an intersectional approach will become more pressing as we all seek to better understand the challenges being experienced across an intersectional population.
- Hybrid working - is here to stay and organisations who embed this well, will see a greater ability to attract and retain under-represented talent.
I have loved engaging with colleagues, clients and my external network over 2022 on all things DEI. I'm excited about what 2023 has to offer and I look forward to how we will continue to advance our DEI plans.