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Ruth Keiran | Co-Chair of the Alliance

Earlier this year many of us engaged (some I might suggest, properly for the first time) in conversations about how we all needed to take meaningful action to advance diversity, equity and inclusion within our agencies and the industry at large.

This has been a hugely important step. But now more than ever, we need to turn those conversations in to action – ensuring that recent events create a lasting movement and help encourage allyship where it is needed most.

As the co-chair responsible for the Alliance of Independent Agencies’ activities focussed on our people, I am pleased to announce the launch of its first DEI charter – which has been created by the Alliance’s DEI Action group.

This charter, which covers a range of commitments, will be the baseline expectation for all Alliance member agencies – and is aimed at making good on our commitment to improve diversity and inclusion in our industry.

Today we launched the charter to the membership, alongside the brilliant Fearless Futures in a collaborative workshop event. We very much hope and believe that the commitments, focussed on collective awareness and action and the setting of clear goals, measurements and timelines, will enable the Alliance’s member agencies to improve everyday inclusion and allow all agencies, and their people, to truly thrive.

The full Charter can be viewed below. For more information on the Alliance or for a copy of the charter, contact info@allindependentagencies.org

Alliance Charter

The Alliance of Independent Agencies Inclusion Vision

Our Member Agencies have workforces that are truly representative of all sections of society and each employee, feels a sense of belonging.

Mission Action Statement

The Alliance of Independent Agencies (The Alliance) are committed to advancing diversity, equity and inclusion within our Member Agencies and in society in general, through the work we create.

We will do this by setting clear goals to action everyday inclusion, measuring our progress towards diversity, inclusion and equity – and holding ourselves to account.

Beliefs

  • We believe that Diversity & Inclusion is a journey, a journey that we are committed to. We will continue to act, to learn, to evolve, and use our platform to advocate, and to be a voice for our member agencies, their people and underrepresented groups within society.
  • Our D & I Charter is mandatory for all the Alliance agencies to sign up to when they join the Alliance.
  • We recognise our charter is the base line and beginning of work to come and will evolve as we unite to focus our efforts to drive sustainable meaningful change.

The Alliance Commitments

  • Ensure our overall group leadership is representative and seek out who is not in the room
  • Create a DEI Action Group and Appoint a DEI Action Leader
  • Set clear DEI Goals, create a roadmap and communicate our progress with transparency
  • Meet regularly to action our goals
  • Take proactive action to seek out different perspectives; creating channels to listen harder
  • Celebrate and champion inclusion, diverse perspectives, and allyship; and use our platform to advocate positive change
  • Create a recruitment charter that addresses privilege in the pipeline at all levels
  • Appoint a preferred DEI training provider and offer access to members
  • Build DEI into all programmes; inc leadership and mentoring
  • Create a Non-Executive Director scheme in partnership with organisations that work to advance under-represented groups

Every Alliance Member Agency agrees to; –

Goals and Action Teams

  • Set clear DEI goals and timelines for improving diversity, equity and inclusion for their agency and communicate goals and progress with transparency.
  • Clearly set expectations for their staff, clients and suppliers around the agency’s position on diversity and inclusion.
  • Appoint a DEI Champion and inclusive team to design the agency’s DEI plan and drive action
  • Send a representative to the Alliance DEI Action Group meetings

Everyday Inclusion

  • Appoint and train a mental health champion to provide awareness and champion ongoing mental health support for employees.
  • Share building accessibility proactively in advance with all candidates and visitors: making public where possible on websites.

Recruitment

  • Commits to combating salary inequity – understanding candidates’ salary expectations and to making salary offers informed by relevance of experience, market benchmarking and internal comparators for the role, rather than current/last salary. Salary decisions informed by current salary can perpetuate salary inequity.
  • Has clear expectations and measures for recruitment partners in pursuit of DEI
  • Builds partnerships to address privilege in the pipeline
  • Agrees to paying all interns

Training and Awareness Building

  • Commits to raising awareness, driving behaviour change and educating employees to be inclusive leaders and colleagues through training
  • Commits to recognising, celebrating different events and perspectives to create a sense of belonging

Work/Output

  • Utilises internal inclusion teams to feed into work
  • Champions inclusion in all work they undertake: agencies should/will take accountability to reflect and create an inclusive world, in their content and in their own agencies.

 

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