Equality and Diversity
Dixon Walter is a signatory to the Voluntary Code of Conduct for Executive Search Firms and as such we wholeheartedly believe in the positive impact of creating a diverse workforce that truly reflects the whole population. Dixon Walter strives to adhere to the Equality Act (2010) in all of our business workings; we aim to protect potential candidates from being treated less favourably because of any protected characteristic including;
• Gender reassignment
• Marriage and civil partnership
• Pregnancy and maternity
• Race (including ethnic or national origins, colour and nationality)
• Religion or belief (including lack of belief)
• Sexual orientation
In the last 12 months 37% of our appointments at the senior level within the higher education sector have been female.
At the beginning of any new campaign we will discuss with key stakeholders their current diversity goals along with any evidence of potential under-representation of any given group/characteristic. Our aim is to design a process that ensures any disadvantage to any group, is alleviated and ensures steps are taken towards positive action where appropriate. Whilst discrimination can occur at any time throughout a recruitment process, we pride ourselves on our ability to design a campaign focused around a specific set of criteria against which all candidates are assessed as equals. This includes internal candidate applications. This set of criteria takes into account a candidate’s overall ability, competence and professional experience, interpersonal skills together with any relevant formal or academic qualifications, as well as any other quality required to carry out a particular job rather than simply focusing on career experience.
The language employed in recruitment, the structure of the recruitment process itself and the nature of a competitive selection process can all produce bias if not carefully managed so that under-represented groups are not to be disadvantaged. We understand that recruitment processes can either directly or indirectly affect outcomes and we are always concerned that our strategy is open, fair and encouraging to all applicants not just the "usual suspects", and is designed only to test relevant skills and experience. We take pride in our candidate care and ensure support is always provided to candidates from under-represented groups via detailed feedback and guidance throughout a process.
We ensure all access points for applications (written, electronic etc.) as well as 24/7 access to campaign material via bespoke microsites to ensure any individuals operating to different/opposite timescales are not disadvantaged. We appreciate the contributions of initiatives such as the Athena Swan Charter and its objective to advancing women’s careers in science, technology, engineering, maths and medicine (STEM) in higher education employment and research.
Having a robust process for application and assessment allows us to measure a candidate on their merits rather than on any protected characteristic. In the very unlikely situation where two or more candidates are displaying equal merit, Dixon Walter will consult with the key stakeholders to discuss positive action and ensure consideration is taken into account around any group that is disproportionately under-represented or otherwise disadvantaged within the workforce (but only when such a decision would proportionately address this under-representation and where clear evidence has been presented to support said disadvantage).
We actively monitor equal opportunities data throughout each campaign and anonymous reports can be circulated to our clients should they wish.