Volunteering Opportunity: Bournemouth Council Recruitment Independent Observers

Bournemouth Borough Council is embarking on a ground-breaking initiative. It is seeking to have its staff recruitment process, from submitting an application, through to interview, and eventual selection of successful applicants, externally monitored.

Dorset Race Equality Council is very pleased to assist, in conjunction with Bournemouth Council’s Equality and Diversity Manager, on ensuring ethnic minority [Black and Minority Ethnic ‘BME’] input to the initiative. Between 8 –12 volunteers are being sought from BME communities to be independent observers to aid the council in assessing and the inclusivity of its recruitment process.

The need for the initiative and your participation:
- Bournemouth Borough Council is the largest employer in the Bournemouth area, and as such sets standards that influence other large employers in both the public (local authorities, public service organisations, etc.) and private (businesses / companies) sectors, locally and in neighbouring areas, including at a regional level. Bournemouth’s ethnic minority community constituted at the time of the 2011 national census, a little over 16%, and would therefore three years later to stand at a slightly higher percentage.
- As such Bournemouth Council, as an employer plays a significant role in the local economy, and as a result of internal research it was found that council job position applicants who are visibly from ethnic minorities are 4 times less likely to be successful, and other [non visibly identifiable] BME applicants are 3 times less likely to be successful.
This initiative will directly help to change this, with your support and participation.

No ‘tick box ethnic minorities monitoring exercise’:
It must be emphasised that this is no ‘tick box exercise,’ initiated for public relations purposes. We know that we are still a long way from having proportionality for BME staff and potential new staff at many levels of our organisation; perceived employment progression ‘glass ceilings’ do on the basis of our own research, still exist. However Bournemouth Borough Council is committed to advancing equality of opportunity, and through this initiative demonstrates the seriousness which it takes towards realising full equality in the workplace, at all employment levels. Our initiative will involve the independent observers being involved in observing at all stages, the selection process for all 16 tiers/levels of employment at the council.

Why get involved?
Successful applicants will:
- Gain valuable employment transferable skills (particularly appropriate to HR ‘Human Resources’ / personnel related jobs in the public and private sectors) and receive on completion a certificate of participation in the scheme from Bournemouth Borough Council’s Equality and Diversity Manager, and Chief Executive Officer

- Have been able to represent their given ethnic minority community, and the broader BME community, in being involved in activities that are publicly recognised and concerned with tangibly addressing the ‘glass ceiling’ phenomenon and perceived ethnicity related discrimination in the workplace

If you wish to apply, what do you need to do?
If you are interested in applying to become one of the volunteer independent observers please read the Eligibility Criteria and Further Information document, and either email expressions of interest to Alan Mercel-Sanca – alan.mercel-sanca@dorsetrec.org.uk or call our offcie on: 01202 392 954 and ask to speak to Alan.


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