Case study: Accredited Inclusive Recruitment

Find out how we worked with our members, the Specialist Operations (SO) business group within the Metropolitan Police to develop an Accredited Inclusive Recruitment programme, which has equipped them with the tools to bring a consistent and inclusive approach to their recruitment.

Read on to learn about the process and key outcomes.

What does the Accredited Inclusive Recruitment programme involve?

This five module programme was designed by a team of Inclusive Employers consultants to meet the specific needs and requirements of the Specialist Operations (SO) business group within the Metropolitan Police. The modules of the programme are outlined below.

Module 1: Basic EDI concepts

This involves an hour of online pre-learning covering the business case and legislation and needs to be completed before participants attend module two.

Module 2: Foundational concepts

Discussions and case studies are used to explore how to apply the legislation in recruitment scenarios, inclusion in the context of the Specialist Operations business group and unconscious bias. This takes place over a half day of virtual classroom learning.

Module 3: Attraction and recruitment

Includes the opportunity for participants to undertake practical exercises to design an inclusive attraction campaign and job pack for a real vacancy within the Specialist Operations business group. This also takes place over a half day of virtual classroom learning.

Module 4: Assessment and selection

This is the final half day of virtual classroom learning and focuses on designing inclusive assessment and selection methods.

Module 5: Assessed assignment

Participants complete an assignment to demonstrate how they are applying the learning from the programme in real-life recruitment scenarios. It is assessed by Inclusive Employer’s trained assessor using robust criteria. Participants then receive structured feedback and a certificate when they pass the programme.

Detective Sergeant David Cann and Superintendent Chief of Staff Neil Myers from the Specialist Operations business group of the Metropolitan Police share their experience of the process and the benefits the programme is bringing to their recruitment processes.

Why did you choose Inclusive Employers to develop this inclusive recruitment programme?

Inclusive Employers are the only experts, that we’re aware of, that focus on all the protected characteristics. We also trust and value their broad range of expertise – they work with other police forces and sectors, which means we have access to a wealth of expertise and experience.

What were your motivations for implementing an inclusive recruitment programme?

Address the impact of bias and privilege

We monitor the recruitment process data by protected characteristic. The data highlighted some areas of disproportionality which we wanted to address. We wanted to unpick the current process and approach, and implement new norms and standards that make our inclusion ambitions a reality.

Our goal was to develop processes that would screen out any unconscious bias – we are aware of the impact of bias and privilege and wanted to build an understanding of this into the programme.

External accreditation

It was really important for us that the programme was accredited externally – we wanted the experience to be meaningful for its participants and the accreditation they receive highlights the inclusive recruitment learning journey they have been on.

Another factor in developing this programme was to establish consistent recruitment processes across the Specialist Operations business group. Some areas recruit on mass, some to specialist roles and we want to move towards a common approach for all vacancies.

Having an Accredited Inclusive Recruitment programme enables us to develop a more consistent approach and sets an organisation-wide standard for us to adhere to.

What are the strengths of the Accredited Inclusive Recruitment programme?

A certified learning experience

We are delighted to have a programme that is accredited by an independent organisation.

The accreditation enables us to counter any potential culture of just turning up to ‘training’ being enough. Our Accredited Inclusive Recruitment programme requires action; it puts learning into practice and develops skills. The certificate is evidence of this achievement and the learning participants have undertaken to get it.

The module structure and accreditation also means that participants have to really engage with and review what they are learning, because their work is being assessed at the end of the programme.

The structure

The structure of the programme worked well. The different modules take the participants on a journey, which requires learning over a number of sessions and days.

The initial focus on bias and privilege, reinforces the importance of this and brings a fresh angle to the subject. The third module covers advertising, wording and methods which naturally leads to the fourth module of assessment panels and techniques.

One day of learning alone wouldn’t have the same impact on their understanding and knowledge of inclusive recruitment.

Injection of innovation and expertise

We needed fresh energy and ideas, which is exactly what we got from working with Inclusive Employers!

We had been replicating a recruitment process that had been approved in the past, and had fallen into the trap of repeating that, but we knew we needed to do more. Inclusive Employers opened our eyes to a range of approaches including how bias plays into the recruitment process and ways to mitigate this.

What are the next steps for the programme?

So far we have run three cohorts of the training for 45 colleagues in total and feedback has been very positive.

Participants have said:

Many thanks, the course was great and I would highly recommend it as it’s such an important area of work.

Accredited Inclusive Recruitment Programme participant

No matter what the outcome [of my assignment] I enjoyed the course and really benefited from it, I’m doing my best to implement some of my learning. The MPS is moving in the right direction and I am grateful for your help and guidance.”

Accredited Inclusive Recruitment Programme participant

These accredited employees are now a huge asset and we are devising ways to maximise the impact of their knowledge by sharing this with colleagues across the organisation.

We know that when this approach is applied across all recruitment areas of the Specialist Operations business group it will have great impact. It is not just about flying the flag of diversity; who we recruit into the police impacts our ability to police effectively.

Police officers working in communities need lived experience in order to properly police the situations they encounter. Training is important but officers with lived experience offer a unique set of skills and insights. We need to recruit with I&D at the forefront to do our job fully.

How Inclusive Employers can help your organisation with inclusive recruitment

If you are an Inclusive Employers member and would like support to develop an inclusive approach to recruitment in your organisation please get in touch with your account manager. Non-members please get in touch with any questions and we’ll be happy to help. You can also find out more about membership here.