TSB signs up to The Race At Work Charter

TSB has signed up to the Race at Work Charter.

The Race at Work Charter is a voluntary charter, developed in partnership with the UK Government and Business in the Community (BITC), and forms part of a wider campaign to address issues of inequality in the workplace.

To address barriers in the recruitment and progression of Black and Minority Ethnic (BAME) employees, the Charter commits organisations to five principle calls to action, which are to:

  • Appoint an Executive Sponsor for race.
  • Capture data and publicise progress.
  • Ensure zero tolerance of harassment and bullying.
  • Make equality in the workplace the responsibility of all leaders and managers.
  • Take action that supports ethnic minority career progression.

Jatin Patel, Products Director and Executive Sponsor for Ethnicity at TSB, says:

“I’m incredibly proud to be TSB’s executive sponsor for ethnicity. It’s an issue that’s close to my heart and something I’m really passionate about.

“That’s why I’m delighted to sign up to the Race at Work Charter which will help us to galvanise our efforts and build on our aspiration of being one of the most inclusive workplaces in the country.”

Sandra Kerr, Race Equality Director at Business in the Community, says:

“Business in the Community are delighted that TSB is making this public commitment to improving outcomes for BAME employees. As Champion Partners of our Race Equality Campaign we will continue to support TSB with the activities they have planned to achieve the charter’s principles.”

Building an inclusive culture has been a focus for TSB since it returned to Britain’s high streets in 2013. The Bank already has several programmes and initiatives to increase BAME representation and support career progression, including external mentoring with BITC and Empower for BAME employees.

Commenting on the value of external mentoring programmes to support career progression, Clever Tandi, Assistant Manager in Conduct Risk Oversight at TSB, says: “I’m glad that TSB encourages BAME progression through its support for programmes such as the BITC mentoring circles.

“I had the privilege of being mentored by a female senior Army Reserves Officer. Knowing that I had a credible mentor to turn to gave me the confidence to take on more stretch goals at work, whilst having a sounding board when I faced challenging hurdles.

“The power of mentoring should never be underestimated. For me it was a truly invaluable experience which is why I would encourage everyone to try it.”

TBS has several activities planned to increase the ethnic diversity of its workforce and to make sure it adheres to the requirements of the Charter including:

Data capture and benchmarking

TSB is updating its HR system to allow the Bank to capture ethnicity data more consistently. Later this year it plans to carry out a robust internal campaign to encourage all of its Partners to update their details so that it can accurately capture data and monitor progress.

Unconscious bias training

TSB is taking a number of actions to make equality in the workplace the responsibility of all its people managers and as a first step is exploring ways to undertake unconscious bias training. This will help the Bank embed appropriate behaviours in all of its people managers.

And that is just a start.  TSB will continually review how it is doing and consider what other actions it can take to help keep its Partners focussed on this important responsibility.

Ensuring zero-tolerance of harassment and bullying

While the findings from TSB’s annual staff survey do not suggest the Bank has an issue with bullying or harassment, research from BITC indicates that as many as one in five BAME employees experience bullying and harassment in the private sector. So, to make sure the Bank maintains its zero-tolerance approach to this important issue, TSB will be working with the BITC making sure any gaps are addressed. The Bank will also be taking part in the BITC’s Race at Work Tracker Survey.

Gillian Slater

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