Policy and resources
Informed by our colleague listening group, we launched a menopause policy and supporting resources and guidance. This includes ideas for reasonable adjustments (based on what our colleagues told us about their experiences), guidance for managers on discussing the menopause with members of their team, as well as other resources and signposting to support.
Looking forward, we will continue to identify areas where we can improve the support we offer colleagues. For example, we recognise that a high proportion of our workforce (when compared to local ONS Census 2021 data) have caring responsibilities and so we will look to focus on developing an effective and supportive policy and package of resources for our managers and colleagues.
Whilst our repeat colleague survey told us that incidence of inappropriate behaviour at work is down (as a percentage of respondents), we are already focussing on policy development and improvements in this area (to include sexual harassment).
We are now routinely capturing diversity data for candidates applying to work at our co-op. We utilise a variety of attraction strategies and have also trialled new application and selection techniques, including an increased focus on behaviours and competencies (and not being overly prescriptive about work experience), as well as mixed diversity in interview panels.
Moving forward, we will continue to develop our employment pathways partnerships with local charities and services, and will seek to identify further opportunities to combat unconscious bias.
Alongside employment partnerships, we are pleased to be working with Hey Girls who source and supply ethical and sustainable sanitary products - these will be available within all colleague locations by the end of 2023. For each product that we purchase, a free product will be shared with the local community.
During 2023-24, our co-op will focus on the development of all-colleague awareness training in the areas of diversity, equity and inclusion.
This year, we launched ‘Our Journey’ articles. Shared via our internal colleague App, as well as externally, these helped to share real colleague stories and examples of different career pathways – including of women in managerial and senior positions at our co-op.
Looking forward, we are currently recruiting a Talent Acquisition & Development Leader who will lead both of our Learning & Development and Resourcing teams, with a strong focus on talent and progression within our co-op.
Using data to understand opportunities for action
Since our last report, we have repeated our colleague engagement and experience survey and were pleased to see an increase in all areas relating to fairness and inclusion.
In addition to this insight, an ongoing priority for our co-op is to improve our understanding of our colleagues through increasing our capture of diversity data. This will be included as part of our new People dashboard (currently being developed), alongside existing measures (e.g. tracking promotions by gender).
We continue to strictly govern any ‘out of cycle’ pay increases to ensure fairness and consistency.