How do your workforce really feel?
This is somewhat unsurprising in light of the new gender pay gap legislation, coming into force in April, which makes it compulsory for companies with more than 250 employees to publicly declare their gap number. There have been others too: campaigns aimed at tackling gender diversity in the boardroom (notably the 30% club), and recruiting a diverse workforce from the onset. At Lee Hecht Harrison Penna, we wanted to explore an area that could be over-looked: the role discrimination may or may not play in promotion decisions.
Our research has uncovered there’s a perceived lack of fairness in organisations’ promotion process among their employees, with one in five (20%) reporting feeling discriminated against in their attempts to rise up the professional ranks. Ageism was the most commonly felt cause of perceived discrimination (39%), followed by gender (26%) and employment status (22%). Further, women are much more likely to feel they have not been giving sufficient career guidance with four in 10 (40%) reporting this to be an issue compared to just a quarter of men (26%).
What’s more, Britain’s leadership talent is most attuned to the perceived lack of fairness in the promotion process as 25-34 year olds feel most hard done by when it comes to promotion decisions: 28% compared to the average (20%). In addition to suspecting bias, they are also more likely to take proactive action with a quarter (24%) leaving jobs due to being passed over for promotion, while a further 24% have resigned because the company has lacked diversity. Not having a promotion process perceived to be accessible and fair could cost you half of your emerging talent and future leadership pipeline. Ensuring your promotion process is inclusive is not an issue worth underestimating.