Outdated recruitment practices need to be addressed to tap diverse talent

A new campaign has been launched by BITC to encourage employers to do more to reach out to under-represented groups to fill their jobs vacancies.



Employers need to address outdated recruitment practices to tap into more diverse pools of talent, including those who are disabled, have prior criminal convictions and younger and older workers, according to Business in the Community.

Its analysis shows that there are 3.1 million people in the UK who could fill the UK’s record 1.2 million live vacancies if employers took action to recruit more inclusively.

BITC says a third of the UK’s working age population made up of people between the ages of 16-24 and 50-65 and one in five adults of working age in the UK reported to have a disability.

Its Opening Doors campaign aims to make two million jobs more inclusive by 2025, by ensuring that employers work with a wider pool of diverse and disadvantaged jobseekers. The campaign’s five-point plan calls for employers to:

  1. Create partnerships which connect people from disadvantaged groups to jobs
  2. Show candidates they are committed to inclusion
  3. Make sure job descriptions and adverts are comprehensive and use inclusive language
  4. Focus on the essential skills and capabilities that are needed to do the job
  5. Prioritise accessibility and eliminate bias.

Nicola Inge, Employment and Skills Director at Business in the Community, said: “By eliminating practices that exclude or deter jobseekers, employers could better connect with a diverse talent pool of over three million people.

“With job vacancies at an all-time high, and many businesses struggling to fill roles across a number of sectors, our campaign aims to solve two big societal problems. What we need to see now is a high take up rate from employers up and down the country, so that obstructive recruitment practices are removed from the job market as soon as possible.”

Meanwhile, the Government has announced up to £23m to create more AI and data conversion courses and offer scholarships to help young people from underrepresented groups including women, black people and people with disabilities to get jobs in Artificial Intelligence.

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