Bupa, B&Q and the Army still investing in diversity despite recession

Bupa, B&Q and the Army are among organisations still investing in diversity despite the economic downturn, new research published today revealed.

An analysis of 77 large organisations found that 86% were still putting the financial resources in place to help create more diverse workplaces.

Sarah Williams-Gardener, director of Opportunity Now, believes the business case for creating inclusive and diverse workforces has never been more important.

She said: “In times of hardship, engaging and motivating your employees is key if you want to drive business and ultimately succeed. Our research proves there is still a very clear business imperative for equality and diversity and that employers are continuing to show commitment and dedication to creating workplaces where everyone can succeed.”

The research, published by not-for-profit organisation Opportunity Now, also showed that equal pay had received more attention since the announcement of the Equality Bill. A key clause in the Bill states that employers will be forced to publish their gender pay gap in 2013 if they do not do so voluntarily.

The survey found equal pay audits were carried out by 69% of organisations, and 44% provided training on equal pay issues to managers who were involved in pay decisions. Some 22% of employers were already publishing their pay gap data in the public domain, the report showed.

The findings come just weeks after a report by law firm DLA Piper was less optimistic about pay audits, stating just 29% of 147 HR professionals surveyed carried out gender pay reports.

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