Comprehensive review of UK corporate workplace diversity and inclusion launched

Leading brands across the UK are being encouraged to take part in a ground-breaking diversity and inclusion report that aims to shed light on some of the key issues holding back growth, innovation and creativity in the economy.

The McKenzie Delis Foundation, a charitable organisation committed to moving the dial on diversity, equality, inclusion and belonging in the workplace; and Ipsos MORI, the third-largest market research company globally, are behind the report and have today announced its launch for 2021.

In an open letter penned to the CEO’s of every FTSE 100 company, Leila McKenzie-Delis, CEO of Dial Global and Founder of The McKenzie Delis Foundation, and  Lord Simon Wooley, Operation Black Vote CEO and member of the House of Lords are amongst those calling on corporate leaders to widen their lens of diversity and have invited companies to be part of the new initiative.

While other lists focus on a single facet of diversity, such as gender or ethnicity, the 2021 McKenzie-Delis Review on Diversity and Inclusion is the first review of its kind to take a holistic approach to diversity and inclusion by providing a comprehensive review of how employers are addressing and prioritising their efforts across 10 facets of workplace diversity and inclusion. These are: Ethnicity, Gender, Age, Nationality, Mental Health, Sexual Orientation, Socioeconomic Status, Disability & Neurodiversity, Religion, and Parenthood.

The Review, expected to be published in April 2022, is based on self-reported practices of UK companies and follows an inaugural report in 2020. The 2021 report will also cover the U.S. market for the very first time, incorporating businesses from the Fortune 100.

“The McKenzie-Delis Review is not your typical ranking or best-of list but creates an industry-standard diagnostic and meaningful report to harness the power of all aspects of both visible and invisible diversity,” said Leila McKenzie-Delis, Founder, The McKenzie Delis Foundation.

“The Review is designed to help companies turn commitments into actions and go beyond traditional diversity pledges to track progress over time in a way that will help position them to recruit and retain the top talent they need to be competitive.”

Large and medium UK businesses will be invited to participate in a survey on their D&I approach and practices that will inform the report starting October 4. The Report will showcase the top 25 companies driving change to create greater diversity and equality in the workplace across the 10 facets. It will also share overall progress and corporate trends and provide actional guidance for businesses to further accelerate their D&I efforts. Other partners include LexisNexis Risk Solutions, KPMG, Britvic PLC, Ipsos MORI and Revolt Communications.

Lord Simon Wooley, Operation Black Vote CEO, member of the House of Lords and Co-Chair of the UK McKenzie Delis Review Committee, said: “Big businesses are starting to ask some searching questions when it comes to diversity and inclusion but there is so much more that needs to be done, particularly in senior leadership positions.

“We need to ensure we create multiple pathways to success and a pipeline of diverse talent so that people know it doesn’t matter where you start – you can get to wherever you want to be. Institutions, policy, business and society all benefit if we can get diversity right.”

Bina Mehta, Chair of KPMG UK and Co-Chair of the UK McKenzie Delis Review Committee, added:

“I see the benefits diversity brings to business every day, from the quality of conversations and different perspectives people bring right the way through to delivering better business outcomes for our firm and our clients.

“It’s vital businesses play their part in championing inclusion, diversity and equity. Diversity of thought is integral to the growth and sustainability of all businesses. Participation in the McKenzie-Delis Review is a chance to join with like-minded organisations to make a difference in society as well as business, to drive equity and inclusion, and, to dismantle barriers and empower growth and progress.”

An independent review committee of corporate and non-profit leaders will guide the report’s framework. Members include representatives from Verizon, KPMG, Walgreen Boots Alliance, Google, Intel, Microsoft, Motorola, Bridgestone, and other international companies. A complete list is available here.

“One of the oldest pieces of management advice is what gets measured gets done,” said Ben Page, CEO of Ipsos MORI in the UK and Co-Chair of the UK McKenzie Delis Review Committee. “Through participation in The McKenzie-Delis Review, companies can track their progress to demonstrate if and how they are moving the needle and identify where they need to focus.”

In the US, Tami Erwin, Executive Vice President and Chief Executive Officer, Verizon Business, will Co-Chair the U.S. McKenzie-Delis Review Committee alongside John Standley, Executive Vice President Walgreens Boots Alliance & President of Walgreens.

“Data shows that by focusing on the full spectrum of employee diversity, employers can create a stronger, more impactful culture of inclusion,” said Tami.

“Participation in the McKenzie-Delis Review is a chance to join with like-minded organisations to make a difference in society as well as business, to drive equity and inclusion, and, to dismantle barriers and empower growth and progress.”

The McKenzie-Delis Review will also serve as a diagnostic tool for businesses that take part. All participants receive a personalised scorecard that compares their performance to peers and top-performing organisations in the UK and the U.S. for each of the 10 facets, at no cost. The tool identifies opportunities for improvement and provides guidance on how to get there.