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Cath Everett

Sift Media

Freelance journalist and former editor of HRZone

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News: Financial services firms scoop up at race diversity awards


Financial services organisations topped the charts this year in terms of accolades for promoting race diversity and equality in the workplace.

Business in the Community’s Race for Opportunity campaign hosted its annual awards dinner at the London Hilton on Park Lane last night, in which four out of nine of the winners came from the sector.
Retail bank Barclays was rewarded in the ‘Employee Network – Private Sector’ category for its ‘Cultural Awareness Network’, which comprises a raft of employee-led mentoring and internship schemes around the world.
The ‘Global Action Award’ went to high street bank, HSBC, for its ‘Leadership Exchange Programme’, which operates in the UK, India and the Philippines, while Goldman Sachs was recognised with a ‘Leadership Award’.
The investment bank received the accolade for its ‘STEP Leadership Development Programme’, which supports black employees to ‘Succeed, Transform, Excel and Perform’ in their roles in order to help create future black leaders across Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
The fourth financial services firm to make it to the top was accountancy firm, KPMG. It won the ‘Widening the Talent Pool – Recruitment Award’ for its ‘Strategic Tactical Advisory Response’ programme, an 11-month paid work experience scheme to help 20 school leavers from diverse communities learn business and commercial skills.
Sandra Kerr, Race for Opportunity’s director, said: “In achieving our aim of creating diverse workplaces that are equal and fair for all requires action across many fronts – from focusing on youth engagement to reassessing recruitment processes.”
The winners should be celebrated for challenging traditional job entry routes into their sector and for their commitment to supporting the often overlooked pool of people from black, Asian or minority ethnic backgrounds, she added.
Other awards comprised:
Collaboration and Partnership Award: Headhunting organisation, Taylor Bennett, for its efforts to address the under-representation of BAME graduates in the communications industry.
Employee Network – Private Sector Award: The Crown Prosecution Service for the work of its National Black Crown Prosecution Association in educating the wider organisation on issues of racism.
Innovation Award: Enterprise Rent-A-Car for its ‘Diversity Scorecard’, which was developed to boost the number of BAME candidates being recruited, especially to management positions.
Mentoring Award: Shell for its UK ‘Mentoring Programme’ for BAME employees, students and young people, which includes internal mentoring circles with senior leaders and external coaching schemes.
Youth Partnership Award: Transport for London for its ‘Youth Engagement and Apprenticeship Programme’, which was developed to help the industry diversify and gain access to new labour pools.
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Cath Everett

Freelance journalist and former editor of HRZone

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