Commenting on the Women and Equalities Select Committee report on employment opportunities for Muslims in the UK Ben Willmott, Head of Public Policy for the CIPD, the professional body for HR and people development said:
“We welcome the recommendations of the report, specifically regarding the roll-out of ‘name-blind’ recruitment processes. While there are no quick solutions to delivering success in progressing diversity and inclusion, and certainly no silver bullets when it comes to eliminating all bias, there are clear steps that government can take, working with employers to tackle the negative trends that this report by the Women and Equalities Committee has exposed.
“Research shows that candidates with traditionally white names receive more call-backs than candidates with non-white names, even on occasions where their CV is identical, and ‘name-blind’ applications have been shown to help combat that bias.
“By encouraging initiatives such as name-blind recruitment and working with employers to really understand the barriers that minorities, especially Muslim women, face, the government can help ensure that these statistics do not get any worse and we start to see people from ethnic minorities, particularly women, begin to play a bigger part in the British economy.
“Employers must ensure their working environments are fair and tolerant for all and business leaders and managers need to commit to fostering an inclusive culture at all levels within their organisations. Visible role models, mentoring and flexible working practices are key.
“Not only is this the right thing to do, but it makes good business sense – diverse workforces enable a wider mix of skills and talents which are key to innovation and performance”