Starting out

Steps to take at the start of your recruitment journey

  • Consider the diversity of your department/area and identify any underrepresentation, based on clear evidence. You may wish to consider the staff demographic data contained in the Equality Diversity Monitoring and Research Committee reports published here EDMARC reports, and supplement this with more granular departmental data.
  • Include your staff in the recruitment exercise. Communicating to your staff throughout the process enables you to promote the transparency and integrity of your recruitment strategy, demonstrating that considerations for diversity have been adopted, decisions have been reached fairly, and bias has been mitigated. This can help to grow the understanding and confidence of your staff in the recruitment process, may help to grow your pool of internal candidates in the future, and will enable you to draw on your staff’s expertise and networks as appropriate.
  • Make sure all those involved in recruitment understand the difference between lawful positive action and unlawful positive discrimination.
    • Positive action in recruitment can include: actively seeking candidates from underrepresented groups and encouraging them to apply; setting diversity targets and challenging yourself to achieve these; taking forward candidates from disproportionately underrepresented groups over other candidates of equal merit.
    • Positive discrimination in recruitment would occur in: appointing an unqualified or less qualified candidate solely because they have a protected (equality) characteristic; and setting quotas (versus setting targets) for appointment of candidates with particular protected characteristics.