The Equality and Human Rights Commission has produced a six step guide to good practice in board diversity.
According to the guide’s introduction, increasing diversity at board and senior management level is acknowledged as a priority by business, governments and regulators, as well many shareholders and customers.
Research suggests that more diverse boards are associated with improved financial performance, enable good corporate governance and facilitate better decision making by bringing different perspectives to support constructive and challenging dialogue.
Companies with a diverse workforce operate more effectively and innovatively by understanding their customers, being more open to change and recruiting the best talent.
The guide sets out the practical steps companies can take when making board appointments to improve diversity and ensure that the best candidates for non-executive and executive director roles are appointed on merit. It also recommends ongoing action companies can take to increase diversity across their entire workforce, in particular to ensure a pipeline of diverse talent for future board appointments.
Equality law places the same requirement on all companies, in all sectors and of all types and sizes, to recruit without discriminating. This guide explains what is required by law and recommends effective good practice.