EY ranked in top ten firms for race and gender equality

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London, 7 November 2012: EY has been recognised for its work in strengthening both race and gender equality as one of Race for Opportunity and Opportunity Now’s top 10 best performing private sector organisations.

The Opportunity Now and Race for Opportunity Benchmarking survey looks into how organisations are performing on gender and race equality, diversity and inclusion in the workplace. It analyses statistics and case studies from organisations across 30 key areas including career progression, recruitment, supplier diversity, and senior management and board representation.

The professional services firm achieved this high ranking for race and gender in part through their targeted programmes for staff development including Career Watch, a programme where individuals are matched with an EY partner who offers ongoing support while identifying barriers to progression, and their Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) Leadership Programme designed to support and nurture ethnic minority talent within the firm which itself won the 2011 Race for Opportunity ‘Widening the Talent Pool for Progression’ award.

EY recently set out an aspirational goal that at least 30% of all their new UK partners are women and at least 10% are BME by 2015 - the first Big 4 professional services firm to publicly do so. These goals received praise as important “drivers for change”. This accolade adds to the firm’s recognition in The Times Top 50 Employers for Women 2012.

Harry Gaskell, Head of Advisory at EY, UK & Ireland, who is also responsible for diversity and inclusiveness, commented, "We are delighted to be featured in the top ten private sector organisations for race and gender progression. We believe that a diverse and inclusive population isn’t just good for our people but it also makes business sense. It is integral to our business strategy, our values and our day-to-day operations which is why we set out our goals for BME and female representation at partner level. Our ranking reflects our continuing commitment to equality.”

Stephen Howard, Chief Executive of Business in the Community, said, “My congratulations to these organisations demonstrating a clear strategic commitment to achieving racial and gender equality, diversity and inclusion. The BITC Gender and Race Benchmark Survey 2012 is an invaluable tool for informing performance improvement, articulating achievements to stakeholders inside and outside the business and enhancing brand reputation. They should be commended for attaining our industry respected mark.”