Tackling workplace inequality
Identifying and tackling inequality in employment, skills and pay in the contract workforce takes many forms, including supporting in-work progression and combating modern slavery.
Building equality for everyone at Granby
We’re a business that prides itself on being people-centric, despite how much we talk about our fulfilment technology! We’ve built a business that invests in its workforce – from providing flexible working patterns to fit around childcare, to supporting training and education, to staff retention and long-term job stability.
We’re committed to continuing to develop our understanding and improve how we do this across all our services – 3PL, contract packing, promotional marketing, customer service and reverse logistics). Here’s the story so far.
Tackling workplace inequality – objectives
- Tackling inequality in the contract workforce
- Supporting in-work progression
- Identifying and managing the risks of modern slavery
What is discrimination?
The government has set out a list of protected characteristics in the Equalities Act 2010. Disability is one of these (see our Reducing the disability employment gap page). The full list of protected characteristics is:
- Gender reassignment
- Being married or in a civil partnership
- Being pregnant or on maternity leave
- Race including colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin
- Religion or belief
- Sexual orientation
- And disability
Blackburn as a diverse community
- The largest district by population in Lancashire, Home to around 154,800 people from many ethnic backgrounds. 66% of the population identified as white British; 34% are from Chinese, Pakistani, Indian, Caribbean, Polish, Eastern European, African, Arab and Bangladeshi backgrounds (2021 Census)
- Blackburn & Darwen has an estimated community of around 10,324 Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) people (Lancashire LGBT with Healthcare Blackburn)
- Historically, the town has a higher than average proportion of young people (0-19) compared to the national figure and yet a smaller proportion of older people (65 and over) (Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council)
- Qualification levels at NVQ4 level and above remain below the national and regional averages, despite showing a gradual increase over time (Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council)
2. Tackling workplace inequality
a. Tackling inequality in the contract workforce
- Granby is aware that across industry generally discrimination exists and that certain sections of the community are under represented and not treated equally – this particularly effects women, the disabled and ethnic and minority groups
- Through recruitment processes and the adoption of an equality policy, we recruit in a way that allows all sections of the community to apply for roles within the business
- We’re aware that barriers exist within organisations and take into account, and accommodate the need for:
- Inclusive access and working conditions for all members of the community
- Religious requirements and obligations
- Requirements for childcare and school provision
- We aim to remove these barriers that are often present in work places through the use of flexible working times, understanding of religious requirements, and the creation of a working environment that allows access to all operational areas for all members of the society
- We adopt formal, structured interviews for promotion opportunities that allow all members of the workforce to be treated in the same way
- Granby understands the importance of retaining employees and has an excellent record of long standing staff members with all departments, showing consistent retention among staff – this is actively encouraged through the implementation of HR practices, such as community days, regular communication, annual reviews, feedback and transparency of pay, rewards and benefits
- Staff are asked to fill in surveys to reflect their feelings about work, conditions and how they feel about their key relationships within the business
- Channels of communication are open to all members of staff and all staff are encouraged to make their feelings known to the business
- Annual communication days take place that explain the current status of the business and the strategy for the next 12 months, along with opportunities for questions about any aspects of the organisation
- All staff are subject to monitoring that reinforces positive feedback about performance and addresses any gaps in skills that it may be possible to fill through training and development
b. Supporting in-work progression
- We understand the benefits to the business and individuals through the development of staff and internal progression – where possible staff are promoted from within Granby to fulfil roles that see a career progression. This has resulted in many staff developing new skills and achieving qualifications in areas that have allowed them to grow as individuals as well as within the business
- Through the use of regular reviews, feedback and monitoring, we identify staff members that may be suitable to progress into developed roles and encourage them to apply for any vacancies that may appear
- Staff are supported through training and education. We have relationships with various training bodies, including Blackburn College and East Lancs Chamber, and encourage staff to identify training and courses that would be beneficial to their roles and with an eye to future development
c. Identifying and managing the risks of modern slavery
- Granby is a member of the Fast Forward scheme, which aims to identify and eradicate slavery from the modern workplace
- Staff have been trained to identify traits and behaviours that may indicate the possibility of slavery and the ways and means by which this is carried out in the modern workplace. To counteract this, HR policies have been developed that means staff are paid directly into their own accounts, and that documentation is provided to prove they are who they claim to be
- All staff have access to grievance mechanisms and staff are free to join any trade union or body they wish to. Representatives of these bodies are welcome to attend any meetings that the staff member may wish to hold with the leadership team
- We provide an induction to all staff members and have a policy around slavery which allows all staff to raise any concerns and to look out for the signs of possible forced work among their colleagues and anonymously express their suspicions
- We are aware that our responsibilities around combating slavery don’t just sit with us, but are also around our suppliers. We seek reassurance that suppliers are aware of and have mitigation measures against the possibility of slavery within their own workforce – this is done through onboarding measures
- All staff are encouraged to request and receive additional training in identifying and mitigating against modern slavery practices, and awareness is cascaded across the business through the use of posters placed on noticeboards
- We price all activity realistically and in line with awareness of individual capabilities throughout the working day. Staff are encouraged to feedback about the company expectations and complaints are heard, recorded and acted upon
- Granby carries out awareness campaigns across the business through the use of posters and material taken from anti slavery organisations, and onboarding forms, which encourage suppliers to review their own anti slavery mechanisms
How we measure our impact on equal opportunities
We collate, analyse and report on our HR data – qualitative and quantitative – to measure our impact on equal opportunities for disabled people using a range of KPIs like:
- Total percentage and number of FTE people from groups under-represented in the workforce employed under the contract, as a proportion of the total FTE contract workforce, by UK region.
- Total percentage and number of people from groups underrepresented in the workforce on apprenticeship schemes under the contract, by UK region.
- Total percentage and number of people from groups underrepresented in the workforce on other training schemes within the contract workforce, by UK region.
- Percentage and number of all companies in the supply chain under the contract to have committed to the government’s 5 foundational principles of good work.
- Percentage of the supply chain for which supply chain mapping has been completed to the appropriate tier or to source in order to reduce the risks of modern slavery.
- Number of people-hours devoted to supporting victims of modern slavery under the contract.