‘Huge rewards’ await businesses recruiting ethnic workers

Businesses
can reap “huge rewards” if they become more effective at recruiting and
promoting ethnic minority workers, according to the conclusions of the
Taskforce on Race Equality and Diversity.

The
business-led taskforce, which was facilitated by the Institute for Public
Policy Research, urged business to set themselves three years to demonstrate a
‘step change’ in their recruitment, retention and promotion strategies.

If
they fail, the Government should regulate to compel companies to promote race
equality, it said.

Peter
Ellwood, chairman of ICI and chairman of the taskforce, said: “Delivering race
equality in the private sector is in the interests of large and small business,
the economy and communities.

“Business
leaders have within their power to tackle both discrimination and boost their
bottom line.”

The
taskforce recommendations include:


There should be a virtual one-stop-shop created that can point businesses
seeking advice on race equality issues in the right direction, demonstrate
‘good practice’ through the use of case studies, and the bottom-line benefit of
having race equality policies


Companies should appoint an equal opportunities champion at group board level,
with a nominated race equality champion immediately below


Listed companies should be required to report and promote progress on equal
opportunities and diversity in their annual reports, which include information
on race equality in recruitment, retention and promotion


Businesses should use their procurement power to encourage their suppliers to
have effective race equality practices.

The
taskforce consisted of the following member companies: B&Q, Barclays Bank,
BT, Ford, RWE Innogy, IXL Laundry Group, KPMG, Lime Hill Consultancy,
Lloyds-TSB, Metdist, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Reed Executive, Sainsburys and The
Ethnic Trail

By Daniel Thomas

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