New BSI Code – Embedding Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in Workplace Culture

The British Standards Institute [BSI] has recently released a new code of practice, PAS 1948: 2023, which offers guidance to organisations of any size, description, location or industry on how to develop, implement and embed an effective DEI [Diversity, Equity and Inclusion] framework in the workplace.

The code, which is available for download, provides practical guidance, and a helpful workplace toolkit, for organisations to create environments that celebrate diversity, promote fairness, and embrace inclusivity.

In this article, we will discuss a few of the key areas covered by this comprehensive code:

  • Leadership and Organisational Commitment: Organisations and leadership are encouraged to incorporate the principle of ‘inclusive by design’ into their business models, policies, practices, technology and services, Additionally, the code explains how leadership and organisations can address behaviour inconsistent with DEI principles and further outlines ways to engage and support underrepresented groups.
  • Assessing Diversity & Equity: Organisations should conduct regular diversity and equity assessments. These assessments involve collecting data on employee demographics, representation at various levels, and disparities in opportunities and compensation. The insights gained from such assessments are vital for setting DEI goals and targets, as well as implementing strategies to address disparities and foster an inclusive working environment.
  • Creating Inclusive Culture: Building an inclusive culture is a paramount objective of the DEI standard. It recommends fostering an environment where everyone’s contributions are valued and individuals feel empowered to bring their authentic selves to work. Organisations are encouraged to implement mentoring programs, employee resource groups, and cultural sensitivity training to strengthen their inclusive culture.
  • Preventing Discrimination and Bias: The code places a strong emphasis on eradicating all forms of discrimination. The standard prohibits any form of discriminatory practices and encourages organisations to adopt unbiased hiring practices, promote diversity in leadership roles and conduct unconscious bias training.
  • Providing Equal Opportunities: Organisations are urged to create pathways for career development, skill-building and advancements that are accessible to everyone. This ensures that every employee has a fair chance to reach their full potential within the organisation.

Accountability and Reporting: Organisations are encouraged to establish clear mechanisms for monitoring progress on DEI initiatives and reporting on outcomes. By tracking and analysing the results of their efforts, organisations can identify areas for improvement and continuously enhance their commitment to DEI.

If your organisation is interested in implementing and driving a sustainable DEI strategy founded on the key areas and recommendations set out in the BSI code, please contact Megan Britz in our team on 07468 698957.