More work to be done on inclusion, finds IGD research

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Food and consumer goods industry has demonstrated commitment and energy to make tangible progress on inclusion and diversity, but that there is more work to be done, revealed a new research by IGD.

The research report, ‘Inclusion and Diversity – Benchmark your progress and build your plan’, provides a benchmarking framework and gives practical advice that companies can use to help support the development of an inclusion and diversity strategy.

According to the report, Over 80 per cent of companies surveyed reported having inclusion and diversity as part of senior leadership conversations whereas half of them have a specific strategy in place.

However, 45 per cent of companies have been identified as ‘on the starting blocks’ and have yet to formally set out their stall on inclusion and diversity and only 40 per cent have targets that measure progress.

Nine in ten surveyed stated that gender diversity forms part of their plans and half reported that making progress on ethnicity is the most challenging area, largely due to inaccurate data and the lack of relatable role models.

“As the largest consumer-facing industry and largest private sector employer, the need for our industry to lead the inclusion and diversity agenda is significant,” commented Susan Barratt, chief executive of IGD.

“Despite what has been a very turbulent year, there is vast evidence to suggest that an inclusive and diverse organisation will help organisations prosper in the future. Our insight gained from our conversations with senior leaders reveals that many recognise that consumers, employees, investors and trading partners are increasingly expecting them to demonstrate strong inclusion and diversity values and plans that align with this.”

IGD has developed a 10 step checklist that will help firms identify practical steps they can take to move inclusion and diversity agenda forward. These include:

  1. Define what inclusion and diversity means for your organisation
  2. Identify your strengths and priorities for improvement
  3. Lead from the top
  4. Set targets and measure progress
  5. Foster an inclusive culture and mindset
  6. Educate and support your line managers
  7. Identify and prioritise interventions
  8. Share success stories
  9. Learn from others
  10. Keep inclusion and diversity high on your organisation’s agenda