Asset 5@3x

Bridging the gap: what can employers learn about emerging talent to drive better hiring strategies?

Join us at this cross-learning, in-person event as part of The HR World Culture Clash series, bringing HRDs, founders and emerging talent together to build a better workforce for the future.

9 June 2022 / 9am - 1.30pm
Engine Shed, Bristol

Diversity and Inclusion – Top 5 Things Employers Need to Consider in 2022

18 January 2022

Story by
Louise Skinner, Partner, Labour & Employment – Morgan, Lewis & Bockius UK LLP

Diversity & Inclusion – Top Things Employers Need to Consider

It will come as no surprise to HR leaders that diversity, equality and inclusion remains a key focus for employers in 2022.

HR and management teams are determined to ensure that promoting diversity, equality and inclusion (DE&I) within the workforce is treated as a priority, particularly as working patterns and locations shift significantly with the widespread move to hybrid working.

Employers managing a global workforce will also need to navigate the different legal frameworks and cultural expectations that exist across regions and countries, seeking to achieve fairness while also mitigating risk.

However, what can HR do to ensure this is placed – and remains at – at the top of the business agenda?

There are a number of impending DE&I developments and considerations that will likely impact UK employers, including:

1. Equal pay directive

In March 2021, the European Commission presented a proposal for a new directive on pay transparency to ensure that women and men in the EU receive equal pay for equal work or work of equal value.

While not directly applicable to employers in the UK, for those employers with an EU based workforce the proposed directive is an important development, and these requirements will inevitably impact the approach taken to assessment of pay equity and related reporting at a global level.

2. Ethnicity pay reporting

The UK Government has consulted on introducing mandatory ethnicity pay reporting similar to the gender pay gap reporting regime during 2018 and 2019.

In light of increasing public pressure, we may expect to see regulations being proposed during the course of 2022.

3. Sexual harassment

In 2019, the UK Government consulted on sexual harassment in the workplace and the outcome was published in July 2021.

One of the recommendations was a new legal duty on employers to proactively prevent sexual harassment in the workplace.

No timetable for the introduction of such a proactive legal duty has yet been announced, but it is possible that this could be implemented during 2022.

4. Menopause

A UK Employment Tribunal recently held that menopause constituted a disability for the purposes of the Equality Act 2010 and in 2021 the UK Government launched a call for evidence on the experience of menopausal people in the workplace.

In August 2021, the House of Common’s Women and Equalities Committee indicated changes to the Equality Act 2010 to expressly include menopause as a protected characteristic could not be ruled out.

5. Be prepared

Most large or multi-national employers will have in place an equal opportunities policy which is reviewed and updated regularly, and many will carry out some form of DE&I or ‘respect in the workplace’ training.

Employers should ensure that they communicate with employees, understand where pockets of perceived inequity or lack of diversity may exist, and take steps to investigate and redress the balance.

An organisation that prioritises DE&I is likely to have a happier, more productive workforce, which will in turn generate business success.



Latest from The HR World