I am currently in a two-year traineeship in HR. I am very keen on the area
of diversity management and would like to pursue this as a career. Do you think
it is a ‘career of tomorrow’? Any ideas as to how I should approach achieving
Peter Sell, joint managing director, DMS consultancy
Your opportunities for working as a specialist in diversity are more limited
than in other HR specialisms, but don’t let that put you off. Many of the
larger organisations, particularly public sector bodies, have specialist
diversity roles, and some have their own departments.
You need to watch for job opportunities in the HR press and research the
organisations that interest you. Other ports of call are the professional
bodies, such as the CBI and CIPD, which undertake research and give advice on
Finally, look out for specialist consultancies that may have consultant
roles providing support to organisations on diversity issues.
Whether it is a ‘career for tomorrow’ is difficult to answer, but if
diversity interests you then follow up on the possible opportunities.
Victoria Wall, managing director, Victoria Wall Associates
You are right; diversity management is a key issue at the moment, and could
potentially become a fundamental specialist area within HR. I would recommend
studying for your CIPD qualification if you seriously want to pursue a career
as an expert in this area.
‘Diversity’ involves so many legal practices that an up-to-date knowledge of
changing employment legislation will increase your credibility and credentials when
it comes to achieving your goal.
Suzanne Taylor, consultant, Macmillan Davies Hodes
l I would certainly agree this is a ‘career of tomorrow’, although not
currently a specialism in vogue. While many organisations currently have no
specialist roles in this field, it is already an important area. It has been
given a high profile in the public sector and large blue-chip employers are
keen for their workforce to fully reflect society, and this trend is likely to
Diversity is a core value of many companies, and they will have related
targets which HR or diversity specialists focus on. These will touch on all
aspects of HR, from policy setting and development, to resourcing and branding.
To fully contribute, you would be best developing a broad generalist
background with a good understanding of employment law and equality issues.