It’s been great to hear everyone’s plans for IP Inclusive Week. If you haven’t yet decided what you’re going to do, how about these ideas to inspire you?
IP Inclusive Charter signatory Kilburn & Strode wrote to tell us that to mark IP Inclusive Week, they plan to set up a “Diversity Forum”. Its purpose will be to ensure that D&I are at the centre of everything the firm does.
Setting up an internal D&I group – a forum, committee, task force, network or whatever else you choose to call it – is a fantastic way of ensuring that D&I don’t get forgotten after you’ve signed up to the IP Inclusive Charter. If you don’t already have one, then why not mark IP Inclusive Week by recruiting a few people and holding a first meeting?
As with all such moves, of course, it’s important that the new group has the support of senior decision-makers in the organisation, and that it involves people from all departments and career levels.
Kilburn & Strode’s Diversity Forum will meet quarterly and each meeting will have a specific focus. It will include volunteers from a range of different backgrounds who will represent the diversity and opinions of the firm’s staff.
Director of Human Resources Jonathan Clarke said: “This is not going to be a talking shop – we will discuss issues and find solutions to tackle them.” He added: “We are committed to recruit, retain and develop a workforce that reflects the diverse city we work in and the clients that we support.” The new forum will help the firm to keep this commitment at the top of its priorities.
Kilburn & Strode also want to start measuring their progress on improving D&I. A second branch of their response to IP Inclusive Week will be the launch of an equal opportunities monitoring initiative. This is a laudable move. Gathering diversity data is a sensitive matter and we appreciate that not everybody is ready yet to take such a step. But Kilburn & Strode are right to do so: no one in the firm will be required to provide information if they don’t want to, and of course it will be treated in the strictest confidence, but the data will be instrumental in guiding the work of the new Diversity Forum and will help the firm to track its progress in improving D&I levels.