Diversity in the workplace
Diversity in the workplace
All employers must recruit on a fair and equal basis. The best employers actively champion diversity in the workplace.
Many graduate recruiters go beyond formal legal requirements and set themselves challenging recruitment targets to build a diverse workforce.
If you feel you have been discriminated against in recruitment, you have rights you can pursue.
Our Careers Managers can provide one-to-one advice on any equality and diversity issues you encounter in your job search.
The UK has many disability-specific organisations that support disabled job seekers to find work.
When looking for jobs, keep an eye out for this symbol. Employers displaying the ‘two ticks’ symbol are part of a government initiative that shows commitment to interviewing you if you meet their minimum criteria for the job.
Here are some useful resources for further information:
- Access to Work - Government information and advice on health and disability
- Association of Disabled Professionals - Forum for disabled people in or entering work
- Blind in Business - Assists visually impaired students into employment
- Scope - DIAL - Local advice line for disabled people
- Disability Action - Promoting the rights of disabled people
- GOV.UK - Disability employment rights
- EmployAbility - Assists disabled students and graduates into employment
- Equality and Human Rights Commission - Employing people with disabilities and what the law requires an employer to do
- Greatwithdisability.com – Maximise your chances at each recruitment stage
- NAS Scotland - The National Autistic Society - Offers work experience and a graduate programme
- Scope - Support for disabled graduates including a work placement scheme
- Shaw Trust - Focusses on getting into employment
- TargetJobs Disability and Mental Health – General advice on rights, support and disability-positive employers
The Equality Act 2010 legally protects women and men, including transsexual people, from being discriminated against at work because of their sex.
Most employers are committed to preventing gender discrimination. However, there is still a gender pay gap of 10% between full-time male and female employees, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
Gender discrimination can be both positive and negative, with some employers having misconceptions that men and women have particular strengths or weaknesses.
Gender imbalances can vary between sectors. Various societies and networks exist to help you succeed in a sector where your gender is still under-represented.
- Equality Act 2010: Guidance
- Equality and Human Rights Comission: Sex discrimination
- Men Teach
- WISE – Women into Science, Engineering and Construction
- Where Women Want to Work: Top 50
- TargetJobs – Gender diversity
Older students and graduates are often at an advantage in a competitive graduate labour market because of the skills and experience gained in pre-degree employment.
It is illegal in the UK to discriminate between job seekers on the basis of age. Your rights are protected if you do not disclose your age when applying. We generally recommend that students omit their birth date on their CV.
- Exertus - Job search tips for the over-45s
- The Age and Employment Network
- 40 Plus Recruitment - Specialist recruitment site for the over-40s
- TARGETjobs – Advice on age diversity
Race, religion and ethnicity
Employers increasingly want to reflect our multicultural society in the workforce, and you should feel free to ask employers about their diversity policies. What programmes do they work with for recruiting and supporting graduates from ethnic minority groups?
- Windsor Fellowship - You may wish to connect with Windsor Fellowship alumni through LinkedIn.
- BEMIS Equality Internship Programme Scotland – Paid internships for graduates from ethnic minority communities
- Equality and Human Rights Commission - Race equality
- Ethnic Minorities Jobsite - To improve recruitment of ethnic minority people and groups
- TARGETjobs – Advice on race diversity
Sexual orientation often features prominently on employers’ diversity agendas for both recruitment and supporting employees. For example, an increasing number have established LGBT support networks.
Stonewall runs Diversity Champions, a scheme promoting best practice for recruiting LGBT employees. A number of big graduate recruiters are associated with it.