Two small changes to create a diverse graduate scheme

Added: 4 weeks ago by Fujitsu

In September 2018, we published a 1.5% decrease in our second gender pay gap – from 17.9% in 2017 to 16.4% in 2018. While our gender pay gap is significantly better than the tech sector average, we do not view it as acceptable and are committed to remedying it. This year, we have taken a detailed look at our findings and have identified key actions to complete in order to move our Gender Diversity Action Plan forward and close our gender pay gap. This blog series will focus on these key actions and impacts.

I’m a champion of graduate programmes. These programmes mould great minds into leaders, transform followers into questioners and empower individual contributors to inspire people to be the best they can.

A high-performing workplace culture depends on different personalities, backgrounds and experiences working seamlessly together. When we get this right it leads to a 50% increase in employee engagement and we are 83% more likely to develop innovative solutions for our customers.

I want our graduate programme to support a high-performing culture, and for us this starts at recruitment to ensure we are hiring the very best person for the role. In 2015 we recruited a cohort that was 25% female. You could say that this was reflective of the industry and our organisation. But we weren’t happy; we knew that there was more we could do. By making 2 changes to our graduate recruitment process we have increased graduate gender diversity.

Attraction

We know that diverse talent need 3 role models they can relate to before they believe it is achievable for them. Keeping this in mind we revamped our junior talent campaign by reflecting the gender diversity of our programme in our advertising campaigns. Also, over the past year, we profiled more female graduate role models on our social media channels. We encouraged them to take over our Instagram, Twitter and Facebook accounts to tell people about a day in their life at Fujitsu.

Selection

We thought long and hard about how we might remove biases from our assessment processes. We scrapped all manual screening, and introduced a situational judgment test. Additionally, at assessment centres, we know our hiring managers are the key to success. But, the design of our assessment centre meant a hiring manager couldn’t see every candidate. We moved to having independent assessors, so the hiring manager becomes an observer. Each year we train all our graduate assessors in unconscious bias. This is a 2 hour recruitment special and includes how someone’s gender can impact hiring decisions. This is delivered just before assessments to ensure it is still fresh in people’s mind – we know this because during the assessment centres we hear assessors checking each other’s bias.

In our 2018 cohort, we had the greatest gender diversity on our graduate scheme with 54% women – 3 of which were hired into technical roles.

These changes have had a wider impact with 2018 being our most diverse cohort yet:

  • 54% Female
  • 28% from a Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic background
  • 3% shared they identify as LGBT+
  • 16% shared they have a disability
  • 30% are from Russell Group universities
  • 41% were the first in their family to study at university
  • 10% received free school meals.

Written by Nick White