Our goal is to build the iconic professional services firm by delivering distinctive client service through the quality of our people. Inspiring and providing an environment in which all our people can give their best is fundamental to this aim. But we can only achieve it if we create a great place to work and have a culture that's genuinely inclusive and respectful, and which promotes wellbeing both at work and beyond.
That's why one of our core corporate sustainability objectives is to be a responsible employer which develops a diverse pool of talented people who create a high performance culture, and to provide the support our people need to create a career which provides the value and motivation they are looking for.
The ability to build and maintain strong relationships is a central part of our brand proposition. We have a long standing commitment to nurture talent from all backgrounds and foster a culture that brings out the best in people, using a combination of measures:
This year we've continued to enhance the diversity of our firm. We introduced the womens’ leadership programme to the whole firm three years ago and since then the percentage of women at partner level has risen from 13% to 15%. This year 18% of our new partners were female. We’ve now introduced these and other new metrics to our sustainability scorecard to make sure we’re reflecting the importance of inclusion and diversity. And, from January 2013 we’ll have three female members of our Executive Board.
But our diversity strategy goes further and aims to recognise and embrace all the ways in which people are different, both visibly - for example, in gender and ethnicity - and invisibly, such as cultural or educational background, or personality. We’ve promoted this through our firm-wide, mandatory Open Minds training, which in 2012 won an Inclusive Culture award from Business in the Community’s Opportunity Now campaign.
Opportunities and risks
Globalisation is driving continual evolution within the labour market. For example, global mobility has increased enormously in the past 20 years, while off-shore outsourcing has become a common business model.
These changes leave non-diverse employers at risk of alienating potential recruits and clients, while becoming a respectful, inclusive and diverse employer offers many rewards. It makes us distinctive in the marketplace and it helps us to meet the standard requirements set out by government and public sector bodies when we tender for work. It makes us attractive to the best people from the widest talent pools and it helps talented people become and remain engaged employees and partners. Also, diverse teams tackle problems from broad perspectives, leaving us well-placed to innovate and to spot new opportunities.
Embedding values in our core processes and measurement
All of our people go through an appraisal process every year. As part of this process, we ask them to summarise their achievements for the current financial year against our performance ambitions and global core competencies (GCCs).
We demand empathy, open-mindedness and integrity from all our people. That's why we've embedded these qualities in our performance ambitions and GCCs, making clear to our people the link between developing and honing them and how well we reward them financially.
Promoting these values helps to create an inclusive environment - and helps us attract, retain, and motivate the best people.
We want to make sure our people continue to feel valued. So we survey everyone twice a year, asking them how they feel about working here. This feedback helps us make sure we're giving our people the tools, support and environment they need to thrive.
Standards and policies
Given the importance we place on our people, it should come as no surprise that we seek to meet the standards of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). Nor that we're global signatories to the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) and that we've committed to the compact's ten principles. Our responsible procurement and our health & safety policies document our commitments to our people in this area.
Meanwhile, our Code of Conduct also captures the essence of our approach to human rights and to building a culture of respect and inclusion - by clearly setting out the way we want our people to do business.
We also challenge ourselves and test how well we're doing through benchmarking and awards. External bodies recognise the progress we've made in this area. That's why, in addition to our Opportunity Now award we’ve been:
Meanwhile, we've been included within The Sunday Times Best 25 Big Companies to Work For ranking for the past seven years and this year we were listed as number 5. We have also enjoyed recognition as the UK's most attractive employer of graduate talent, ranking first in The Times 'Top 100 Graduate Employer' survey for the past nine years.
Find out more about our sustainability credentials.
We know networking contributes to personal and professional fulfilment and success. That's why our firm is home to twelve internal diversity networks. Each network has specific objectives tailored to its membership. But all of them share the aim of providing a sense of community, inspiring and supporting diverse talent and raising awareness of diversity within our firm.
As well as the personal development and support aspects of the networks, they have a focus on identifying new business opportunities for the firm, supporting our strategy to be a leader in each of our chosen markets.
Our networks are:
March for Diversity
In spring this year, we ran our third annual UK-wide sustained awareness and engagement campaign, March for Diversity. During this month-long celebration, business unit leaders encouraged all our people to take part in initiatives led by our twelve people networks and arranged local activities in offices and across teams, to highlight the value of difference. Examples included photograph competitions and food festivals.
Find out about diversity in our supply chain.