Progression of BAME employees forms the focus of new government review

27 February 2018 -

BAME workerNew government research will look at promotions, pay gaps and bullying of BAME professionals

Elizabeth Oliver

Black, Asian, minority ethnic (BAME) workplace progression; the ethnicity pay gap and minority bullying and harassment will be the focus of a government report, which will review the actions employers are taking to promote diversity in the workplace.

The research will form part of the Industrial Strategy’s aim to boost productivity and success in the workplace, and will be carried out by the charity Business in the Community (BITC).

“We want to make sure that the economy works for everyone, so people have the same opportunities to progress and can achieve their true potential,” business minister Andrew Griffiths stated. “This new research will establish what steps employers have taken to haul down workplace barriers and harness the talent of a diverse workforce, helping us to assess if further action is needed.”

Breaking down barriers

In February 2017, the independent McGregor-Smith Review found that the economy could benefit from a £24 billion-a-year increase if BAME colleagues had the same opportunities as their white colleagues. The review outlined 26 recommendations for areas for BAME workplace progression, which included raising transparency and celebrating success. It also campaigned for companies with more than 50 employees to publish a breakdown of their workforce by race and pay band.

The new research will build upon the McGregor-Smith Review, and will analyse how employers are improving BAME advancement in the workplace. Baroness McGregor-Smith, who conducted last year’s review, said: “this one-year-on review of the government’s report on race in the workplace gives us the opportunity to take stock of progress and consider if stronger actions are needed for use to see change.”

Delivering Diversity

CMI has long advocated the benefits of a diverse workforce. Last year, the CMI and the British Academy of Management published the Delivering Diversity report, which highlighted that many companies lacked clear information about the diversity of their management pipeline.

The report revealed that only 54% of FTSE100 leaders were seen to be championing greater diversity in their workplaces. Despite around 12.5% of the UK population being BAME, they hold just 6% of top management positions. “Too many leaders have been silent on race and ethnicity and it’s time for change,” CMI’s Petra Wilton said. “The progress we’ve started to see on gender diversity shows how business can build momentum on the issue.”

CMI's Delivering Diversity report is available at 

Image credit: Shutterstock

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