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uk MP, David Lammy, has launched the Professional Recruitment
Guide. The launch of the guide coincides with the ‘New
Opportunities’ white Paper and the creation of a panel to identify
obstacles to accessing certain professions, as well as proposing
actions to widen participation.
             he panel, chaired by Alan Milburn, will work closely      who do not even apply, or employees who vote with their feet
             with representatives of the professions. The aim of the   because they feel unwelcome or their needs go unmet.
             panel is to identify the options that the professions,       Many of these employers were actively engaging with negative
             working with government, could take to improve            stereotypes of their professions and the employees who work in
access. The idea for the Professional Recruitment Guide can be         them. Some of this, they believed, could be addressed through
found in Sir Alan Langlands’ ‘The Gateway to the Professions           community outreach programmes and initiatives that provided
Report’ (2005), which considers how the professions could sustain      students of all ages with concise information and positive
and improve recruitment opportunities for graduates before the         role models. The results have been encouraging, although all
Government’s (2006) introduction of variable fees in university        agree more work is needed. With applications and recruitment
courses. The report concludes that the introduction of fees should     rates for the six diversity strands — gender, race, religion,
have no effect on university entrance, although it might impact on     sexual orientation, disabilities and age — apparently on the
diversity in recruitment to the professions.                           increase, employers in this case study demonstrated a desire
  In 2008, the DIUS (Department for Innovation, Universities           to make the workplace more inclusive and welcoming to all.
and Skills) commissioned PARN (the Professional Associations           PricewaterhouseCoopers used bias training as a tool for making
Research Network) to research and identify interesting and             employees aware of the effect of their individual practices and
innovative employer recruitment practices that widened access          actions on others. It was felt that failing to tackle an inharmonious
to new graduates entering the professional labour market.              working environment resulted in reduced productivity levels and
The research output was to provide guidance to employers               low retention rates.
for implementing diversity into their recruitment processes.              Increased rerecruitment costs and reduced productivity levels
PARN interviewed recruitment staff from nine small, medium             were a concern for employers and this transmitted into t
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