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14 Ways to Create an LGBTQ+ Inclusive Workplace in 2024

29 February 2024

Fostering inclusivity is not just a choice; it’s the right thing to do, and it also makes business sense too. Creating an environment where everyone, regardless of their sexuality, feels accepted and valued is crucial for the success and well-being of both employees and the organisation as a whole. In this blog post, we'll explore practical steps to make your workplace more LGBTQ+ inclusive, embracing the principles of respect, understanding, and teamwork.

Importance of Inclusivity
Inclusivity is not just a buzzword; it's a cornerstone for a thriving and successful workplace. Embracing diversity, including individuals of all sexual orientations and gender identities, contributes significantly to an organisation's innovation, creativity, and overall success. When employees feel valued for who they are, irrespective of their background, they bring their authentic selves to work, leading to increased engagement and productivity. Inclusive workplaces also foster a sense of belonging, reducing turnover and attracting top talent. Moreover, an inclusive environment encourages diverse perspectives, which is vital for problem-solving and decision-making. By prioritising inclusivity, organisations not only create better working environments for their employees but also position themselves as socially responsible and forward-thinking entities.

Understanding the current landscape of diversity and inclusion in the UK workplace is essential for driving positive change. According to a study by Stonewall, a leading LGBTQ+ rights organisation:

  • More than a third of LGBT staff (35%) have hidden that they are LGBT at work for fear of discrimination.
  • Almost two in five bi people (38%) aren’t out to anyone at work about their sexual orientation, compared to seven per cent of gay men and four per cent of lesbians.
  • One in four trans people (26%) aren’t open with anyone at work about being trans. This number increases to about two in five non-binary people (37%) who aren’t out at work.
  • Almost one in five LGBT staff (18%) have been the target of negative comments or conduct from work colleagues because they’re LGBT.
  • Almost one in five LGBT people (18%) who were looking for work said they were discriminated against because of their identity while trying to get a job.

These statistics underscore the need for continuous efforts in creating inclusive workplaces where all employees feel accepted, supported, and free to be themselves. By addressing these challenges, organisations can take meaningful steps towards building a truly inclusive culture that reflects the diverse tapestry of the workforce in the UK.

14 Practical Steps to Foster LGBTQ+ Inclusivity

So how can organisations promote inclusivity? We have put together our 14 practical steps to foster LGBTQ+ Inclusivity.

  1. Recognise that Identities are Complex
    Everyone is different. Make sure to set some time aside to get to know your current team and any new starters, this creates a safe space for them to share who they really are and share any issues they’re experiencing.
     
  2. Don’t Expect Anyone to ‘Out’ Themselves
    Being ‘Out’ at work is a choice that each individual should feel comfortable to make for themselves. Many people won’t feel safe or comfortable outing themselves at work, so design your programmes to include people, whether they are ‘out’ are not.
     
  3. Educate and Raise Awareness
    Start by fostering a culture of awareness. Provide educational resources that help employees understand the diversity within the LGBTQ+ community. Simple workshops or presentations can go a long way in dispelling myths and stereotypes, promoting empathy and understanding.
     
  4. Inclusive Language
    Language matters Encourage the use of inclusive language that respects diverse identities. Be mindful of gender pronouns and create an environment where individuals feel comfortable expressing their preferred pronouns without fear of judgment.

    Inclusive Terms

    • Hi all, folks, team, friends, team, everybody, everyone, or specific terms like customers, clients, employees
    • Invite your partners, spouses to the event
    • Chair, chairperson, door attendant, bartender, server etc
    • Humankind
    • Best person for the job
    • The person in the green shirt
    • Sexual orientation, sexuality
    • Gender identity
    • Trans, trans person, transgender person, trans man, trans woman

    Non Inclusive Terms
     
    • Hi guys, ladies, gentlemen
    • Invite your boyfriend, girlfriend, husband, wife to the event
    • Chairman, doorman, barman, barmaid, waiter, waitress etc
    • Mankind
    • Best man for the job
    • The man in the green shirt
    • Sexual preference
    • Sex, specifically mistaking sex for gender
    • Transgendered, transwoman, transman
    • Decided to be/become a man or woman 
       
  5. Normalise Pronouns
    Including the option to had pronouns in your email signatures and various platforms your organisation use is an important move towards inclusivity. As mentioned, this should be optional, as not everyone will feel comfortable sharing their pronouns. Not everyone will feel comfortable sharing their pronouns. You could say something like:

    “Anyone who wants to add their pronouns to their email signature is welcome to. Adding these words helps make it clear that we respect each other’s gender identities and normalise conversations about gender.”

    You can display pronouns in Teams Profiles, Slack profiles, Zoom participant names, staff bios, HR and payroll software etc.
     
  6. Celebrate Diversity
    Celebrate different cultural events and observances related to the LGBTQ+ community. Acknowledge Pride Month or other relevant occasions by organising events, displaying inclusive decorations, or even sharing stories of LGBTQ+ individuals within the organisation. This not only promotes awareness but also helps create a sense of belonging.
     
  7. Establish Support Networks
    Consider setting up support networks or affinity groups within the workplace. These groups provide a platform for employees to connect, share experiences, and offer support. This fosters a sense of community and shows that the organisation values and encourages diversity.
     
  8. Inclusive Policies
    Review and update existing policies to ensure they are inclusive and supportive of LGBTQ+ employees. This includes non-discrimination policies, healthcare benefits, and family leave policies. Communicate these policies clearly to all employees to ensure everyone is aware of their rights and feels supported.
     
  9. Lead by Example
    Leaders play a pivotal role in shaping company culture. Encourage leaders to lead by example, embracing diversity and inclusivity in their daily interactions. When employees see leadership actively promoting an inclusive environment, it sets a powerful precedent for the entire organisation.
     
  10. Foster a Safe Space
    Create a workplace where individuals feel safe to be themselves. This involves addressing any instances of discrimination promptly and effectively. Implement reporting mechanisms and ensure that employees trust the process, knowing that their concerns will be taken seriously.
     
  11. Continuous Training and Development
    Implement ongoing training programs to keep employees informed about evolving diversity and inclusion issues. Equip them with the tools to challenge biases, stereotypes, and discriminatory behaviours. This proactive approach ensures that inclusivity remains a fundamental aspect of the organisational culture.
     
  12. Intersectionality Matters
    Recognise that individuals may belong to multiple marginalised groups, and their experiences are shaped by the intersection of these identities. Embrace an intersectional approach to inclusivity, acknowledging the unique challenges faced by employees who belong to both the LGBTQ+ community and other marginalised groups.
     
  13. Employee Resource Groups
    Encourage the formation of Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) specific to the LGBTQ+ community. ERGs provide a platform for networking, mentorship, and advocacy within the organization. They also serve as valuable channels for feedback and insights on creating a more inclusive workplace.
     
  14. Know that there’s no Quick Fix
    There’s no button you can press for instant LGBTQ+ inclusion. It’s an ongoing, ever-evolving journey towards a more inclusive future. Similarly, there is no one template for a perfectly LGBTQ+ inclusive workplace. Inclusivity should be seen as both a process and a goal, rather than a quick fix.

Building a more LGBTQ+ inclusive workplace is not just a goal; it's a journey. By embracing diversity, promoting understanding, and fostering a sense of belonging, organisations can create environments where everyone can truly thrive. Remember, it's not about meeting quotas; it's about inspiring working lives by making every employee feel valued, respected, and included. As we take these steps together, we pave the way for a future where workplaces reflect the rich tapestry of the diverse and vibrant communities we serve.

If you and your organisation would like further advice on how to build an inclusive workplace for the LGBTQ+ community, or any diverse group for that matter, reach out us at info@morganhunt.com. You can find out more about Morgan Hunt’s Diversity and Inclusion work here: www.morganhunt.com/pages/diversity-and-inclusion

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Financial Wellbeing in the Workplace

19 December 2023

In today’s current climate, especially when taking into consideration the cost-of-living-crisis, companies are increasingly recognising the importance of fostering financial wellbeing among their employees. Financial stress can significantly impact an individual's overall well-being, leading to reduced productivity, increased absenteeism, and a decline in job satisfaction.
 

How are our finances and mental health linked?

The intricate connection between finances and mental health is a well-established reality. In the UK, individuals facing financial challenges often experience heightened levels of stress, anxiety, and even depression. The burden of debt, the pressure to make ends meet, and the uncertainty surrounding future financial stability can take a toll on one's mental and emotional well-being. This intersection is particularly significant in the workplace, as financial stress can permeate into professional life, impacting focus, decision-making, and overall job satisfaction. Recognising this interplay is crucial for employers aiming to create a supportive and thriving work environment.
 

Why should employers be concerned about the financial wellbeing of their staff?

Employers should have a vested interest in the financial wellbeing of their staff, as it directly correlates with the overall health of the organisation. Financially stressed employees are more likely to experience decreased job satisfaction and engagement, leading to lower productivity levels. The impact is not confined to the individual; it ripples through the entire workplace, affecting team dynamics and organisational culture. High levels of financial stress can contribute to increased absenteeism and employee turnover, in turn, elevating recruitment and training costs.

Moreover, businesses that prioritise the financial wellbeing of their employees are more likely to attract and retain top talent, fostering a positive reputation and competitive edge in the job market. In essence, the financial health of employees is intricately tied to the success and sustainability of the business, making it a strategic imperative for employers to proactively address and support the financial wellbeing of their workforce.
 

How can you help as an employer?

Employers have the power to improve both the financial and mental wellbeing of their workforce, as well as their productivity, by introducing new processes or resources that build financial resilience, creating a culture of support and providing essential help once problems have set in.

  1. Financial Education Programs
    Results from the Family Resources Survey (FRS) for the financial year 2020 to 2021, reported
    one in seven UK families reported having no savings. Highlighting the need for comprehensive financial education programs.
    1. Provide employees with resources and workshops on budgeting, saving, and investing.
    2. Offer seminars on topics like debt management, retirement planning, and financial goal setting.
  2. Comprehensive Benefits Packages
    1. Include financial wellness benefits in employee packages, such as retirement plans, health savings accounts (HSAs), and access to financial advisors.
    2. Consider offering flexible work arrangements to help employees balance work and personal financial responsibilities.
  3. Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs)
    A survey by the Mental Health Foundation found that
    almost one third (31%) of UK adults have felt anxious in the past month due to their personal financial situation.
    1. Implement EAPs that address not only mental health but also financial stress.
    2. Provide confidential counseling services for employees facing financial challenges.
  4. Salary Transparency and Fair Compensation
    1. Foster an open dialogue about compensation, ensuring that employees understand their salary structure and benefits.
    2. Regularly review and adjust salaries to align with market standards and employee contributions.
  5. Promotion of Work-Life Balance:
    1. Encourage a healthy work-life balance to prevent burnout and reduce the temptation of seeking additional income through multiple jobs.
    2. Offer paid time off and flexible scheduling options.
  6. Debt Relief and Assistance
    The Money Charity reported that, as of January 2022,
    the average total debt per UK household, including mortgages, was £63,122., emphasising the importance of debt management. 
    1. Explore partnerships with financial institutions to offer low-interest loans or debt consolidation programs for employees facing financial strain.
    2. Provide information on debt management and resources to help employees navigate financial challenges.

Benefits of Prioritising Financial Wellbeing

  • Improved Productivity
    Employees experiencing reduced financial stress are more likely to be focused and engaged at work.
     
  • Enhanced Employee Loyalty
    Companies that actively support their employees' financial wellbeing create a sense of loyalty and commitment.
     
  • Reduced Absenteeism
    Financially healthy employees are less likely to miss work due to stress-related illnesses.
     
  • Positive Company Culture
    Prioritising financial wellbeing fosters a positive culture that cares for its employees beyond their professional contributions.

 

Promoting financial wellbeing in the workplace is not just a moral imperative but also a strategic investment in the success and sustainability of a company. By implementing thoughtful initiatives, companies can empower their employees to achieve financial stability, leading to a more engaged, productive, and satisfied workforce. As we move forward, let us recognise that the health of a business is intricately tied to the financial health of its employees.

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Six Unique Benefits of a Social Care Career

12 December 2023

Social care is all about making a positive impact on the lives of both people and communities. A career in social care is an important and rewarding career path. Social care and social work are full of caring people who are dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of our most vulnerable members of society. As the demand for public sector social care jobs and social work roles continues to grow, the sector opens up more opportunities for dedicated and caring people who want to make a difference. People who go above and beyond to make people feel safe, respected, well-cared for, and happy.

Whether you are considering a career in social care, or you’re an experienced social worker, you should know there’s never been a better time to join the social care sector. Dedicated professionals are in short supply and high demand. This means you’ll feel appreciated by your colleagues and clients!

We look into the benefits of working in social care and how registering with a social care recruitment agency can elevate your social work career.

 

  1. You’re at the Heart of The Community
    Public-sector social care jobs are at the heart of community service. Working in these roles allows you to contribute to the welfare of society. Every action you take, from supporting vulnerable individuals to implementing community programmes, has a measurable impact.
     
  2. Social Care Work is Flexible
    For those who value flexibility, temporary social work jobs could work out well for you. Although the roles are temporary, they enable you to experience, work with different demographics, and refine your skills while maintaining a work-life balance that suits you.
     
  3. Every Day Is Different
    No two days of working in social care are the same. You’ll learn to deal with different situations daily, which is why social workers, carers, and others in the sector are adaptable and resourceful. These experiences will give you transferable life skills that you can use to benefit your own family, community, studies, and other jobs you might have in the future. You’ll be looking after different people with changing circumstances and conditions at different life stages.
     
  4. You’re in Demand with No Shortage of Work
    The figures from Skills for Care Adult Social Care Workforce data show that from 2022 to 2023, the sector had around 152,000 vacancies on any given day. Currently, the sector would like to attract more men and younger people, who are under-represented in the workforce. From care assistants to support workers, there are vacancies across the country with a variety of public sector and private employers that could help you take your next step in social care or social work.
  5. Make a Difference Today and Everyday
    There aren’t many jobs where you can make a difference in people’s lives, but social care allows you to do that every single day.  From helping people to live independently, to taking part in their communities and doing the things that help them to enjoy life whatever challenges they might face. A special aspect of working in social care is the way that even the smallest thing can make the biggest difference to someone who struggles daily because of poor health, disabilities, or old age. Whether it’s helping with personal care, domestic chores, cooking, or having a chat, the feeling of knowing that you’re improving someone’s quality of life makes your role worthwhile.
     
  6. Training and Development
    A social care career brings training and development. As well as having the opportunity to gain formal qualifications, there’s also a huge scope to learn on the job with social care that you won’t experience with many other careers.

 

Social Work Agencies in the UK

With a robust network of social work agencies, each has its strengths and specialities.  Social care recruitment agencies, such as Morgan Hunt, play an important role in connecting passionate individuals with the right opportunities. At Morgan Hunt, we understand the unique demands of the social care sector, ensuring that candidates are matched with roles that align with their skills, values, and career aspirations.

Registering with a dedicated social care recruitment agency sets the stage for a rewarding career where you can make an impact on the lives of others.  Whether you are drawn to public sector social care jobs, exploring social work careers in London, or seeking flexibility in temporary roles, the social care sector offers unlimited opportunities. We cover specialist areas ranging from alcohol and substance misuse and criminal justice to disabilities, fostering, and adoptions.

At Morgan Hunt, we recruit for:

  • Social workers
  • Social work managers
  • Adult social care professionals
  • Child and youth social care professionals
  • Mental health support workers
  • Hostel workers

Social Work Careers in London and Beyond

London is home to an estimated 9,648,11 people. It is no surprise that England’s capital city needs more social care workers. Being a busy and diverse city presents countless opportunities for social work. From diverse communities to an array of social issues, social work jobs in London provide an enriching experience for carers looking to broaden their horizons to address the complex needs of a city population.

London is just one of the hubs. From quaint towns to rural villages, you’ll find a plethora of social work opportunities all across the UK. And thanks to Morgan Hunt’s broad network and strategic approach, you’ll gain access to the most up-to-date, fulfilling positions, located near you.

Take the Next Step

Of course, the hours can be long, the work challenging, and some moments can take a physical and emotional toll, but the rewards are plenty. With an ageing population in the UK, the care sector is a great sector in which to build a fulfilling and long-lasting career.

Whether you’re considering the next step in your career, or thinking about social care as a new career path, explore the wide range of opportunities in the care sector today.

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Considering a Career in Finance: 5 Key Points You Should Know

06 December 2023

The diversity of the finance industry offers a wealth of opportunities, and consequently, the chance to choose a career that aligns most with your skills and work goals. Not only that; you can choose the entry route that best suits your learning style.

So whether accountancy sparks your interest, you think investment banking could be a good option, or your interests lie in financial planning, take a look at these five key points that will help to guide you in your career decision.

  1. A choice of entry routes
    If you don’t already hold a finance qualification you can embark on this career through various routes. You might prefer to learn in a lecture room environment, for example, and gain an appropriate finance or business degree at university. It’s also possible to complete a degree course through the Open University and other institutions that offer courses online, or via blended learning where you study online and attend a local college or university part-time. Or perhaps learning whilst you work in a finance role is better for you? In this case, you could apply for an apprenticeship or follow a vocational/technical path and gain practical finance skills whilst earning.
     
  2. A challenging but rewarding career
    Working as a finance professional will be challenging at times, but it also offers you a rewarding and potentially high-earning career. Once you’ve amassed some specialist knowledge and practical experience it can be financially very lucrative. It’s not only financial benefits that are on offer, however. Being involved in finance as a professional brings other rewards, including knowing that your contribution is making a positive difference in other people’s lives.
     
  3. Diverse career options
    A range of career options within the finance industry gives you the scope to move to different roles in the future using your transferable skills – perhaps from the public to the private sector, for example. Specialising in a particular area of finance for a while, such as accounting or taxation, can be a good choice as it allows you to build up your technical know-how and your reputation within the field of expertise.
     
  4. A solid career path
    There’s typically a clear career path in a finance role, commonly with professional mentoring and support available from the employer. One way to gain a closer picture of potential career routes that you’re interested in is to apply for internships. You’ll get the first-hand experience you need to decide your future with more confidence, and the timing will be right if you’re accepted as an intern whilst studying.
     
  5. Finance is an evolving industry
    Finance is at the forefront of technological advancement and ‘disrupters’ to the industry, particularly in banking and financial services, make it an exciting industry in which to work. New and emerging technologies, including artificial intelligence and machine learning, enable deep analysis of huge amounts of data and allow finance professionals to use their skills on ‘higher-level’ work. The fact that the UK is also a key international centre for finance could open up opportunities if working abroad is attractive to you or if you’d like to travel overseas in a work capacity.
     

Seek professional guidance when considering a finance career
Making a career choice can be daunting and it’s easy to be swayed by the opinions of people close to you. That’s why it’s always a good idea to talk to independent professionals who understand the industry before making your decision.

Before seeking professional career advice, you should think about the skills you can offer an employer in the finance industry, the different sectors that are open to you, and the types of work that seem most attractive.

About the author - Chris Bristow is a business debt expert at Real Business Rescue, company rescue, restructuring and liquidation specialists with a wealth of experience in supporting company directors in financial difficulty.

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Empowering Working Mums: The Role of Flexible Working

15 November 2023

The role of women in the workforce has evolved dramatically over the past few decades. Gone are the days when women were primarily relegated to the role of homemakers. Today, women make up a significant portion of the global workforce, juggling their professional and family responsibilities.

For working mothers, in particular, the challenge of balancing work and family life is a delicate tightrope act. Recent statistics highlight this.

Flexible working arrangements emerged as a lifeline for working mums, providing them with the much-needed flexibility to excel in both their careers and family life.

Hear From Working Mum’s at Morgan Hunt

We've reached out to working mums within the Morgan Hunt team to hear from them about their experiences. Their insights shed light on the unique challenges they face and how flexible working has become an essential tool in their journey to success.

Kirsty Stoddart – Senior Business Manager
In her own words, Kirsty Stoddart sheds light on how flexible working has transformed her work-life balance:

"In terms of flexible working I would say the working pattern I have at the moment really helps with my family life. The fact that I finish at 3pm every day gives me time to see the kids after school and get organised for after school clubs etc without having my head in the laptop at the same time! And when I asked just a few months ago to change my working pattern, it didn’t seem to be an issue to the company or my manager."

She also underscores the crucial role of her manager, Gillies, in supporting her:

"I know it is Morgan Hunt as a company that offers the flexible working, but also I would say the backing I get from Gillies is a massive help too as he is always understanding when 'life' happens and you need to reorganise work, etc."

Kirsty also touches upon the pressure she places on herself as a part-time worker:

"The only other thing I would add is that with working part-time, it is a pressure to achieve and do all parts of your role the same as a full-time member of staff. Not necessarily that anyone is putting pressure on me, but more me putting it on myself if that makes sense!"

Amie Day – Business Manager
Amie Day shares her own challenges as a working mum:

"I have 2 children – 4 years and 2 years old and I find having a career and being a mum very hard and challenging. But Morgan Hunt have made it easier for me by allowing me to work remotely and work 4 days a week so it gives me the time to be at home and flexibility to be there for my children should I need to. It also allows me to manage my own workload and work to suit me and my family."

She emphasises the importance of understanding and support:

"This job is very pressurised and busy, especially being in education at the busiest time of year but having a great manager who is a father himself, he manages to see it through my eyes too. I think more people need to be understanding that not only do we do a good job, but we are a mum to very demanding little people. You need a good team network and support around you who are understanding and considerate."

Annabelle Walster – Business Manager
Annabelle Walster recounts her experience of returning to work after having her second child:

"Returning to work after having my second child was a real shock to the system! It’s difficult to juggle the demands of being a mum whilst still being successful in your career.
I am lucky to have had the support of my team in Manchester and in particular my Director, Eliot who has made retuning to work a whole lot easier with his support and understanding he has given me"

She goes on to explain how flexible working has helped her:

"Being able to work in a flexible way has helped me immensely! Living quite a distance from the office, working from home 3 days per week means I get to spend quality time with the children in the evening, something which wouldn’t have been possible before we worked flexibly due to the commute."

Annabelle highlights the challenges of working part-time in a demanding industry:

"Although for me, working 4 days a week is a huge positive, it does present challenges when working in a demanding industry such as recruitment. Having a work from home set up means I can overcome these challenges and speak to my candidates and clients outside typical working hours to ensure my business still runs smoothly!"

Challenges and Future Developments

Women in the UK are putting in more time at work than ever before thanks to flexible and hybrid working policies that sprang up during the pandemic, an analysis of official data by Bloomberg shows. However despite the numerous benefits of flexible working, challenges remain.

There has been a push to return more workers into the office, which risks undercutting a surge in the hours the women spend on the job.

Hybrid working, such as coming into the office two to three days a week, doesn’t necessarily fall into the flexible working bracket and can bring huge benefits including improved collaboration and enhanced team dynamics. It’s important to strike the right balance and understand the nuances of hybrid and flexible working and what works for the individual.  

The concern is that this shift back to the office may affect women disproportionately. The pandemic had increased men's involvement in household responsibilities as more of them worked from home. However, the return-to-office mandates by companies could undermine this progress, creating conflict in two-career households. The reduced flexibility that comes with a return to the office may lead to a less equitable division of household tasks, which in turn can impact equality at home and work. It's a reminder that the benefits of flexible working go beyond gender equality and are vital for a diverse and inclusive workforce.

The Benefits of Flexible Working for Working Parents

Working mums are a vital part of the modern UK workforce, and their contributions should be celebrated and supported. Flexible working arrangements provide a lifeline to working mothers, allowing them to excel in their careers while still being there for their families. As society continues to evolve, it's crucial for businesses and policymakers to prioritise and promote flexible working options.

Empowering working mums is not just a matter of gender equality; it's a smart investment in a happier, healthier, and more productive workforce, and a step toward addressing the gender pay gap. If you'd like further advice or guidance, don't hesitate to reach out to us at info@morganhunt.com

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Navigating Change: Menopause in the Workplace

08 November 2023

On Wednesday 1st November 2023 we ran, ‘Navigating Change: Menopause in the Workplace’, where we were joined by three expert speakers who explored the profound impact of perimenopause and menopause on individuals and their careers. 

We discussed:

  • Perimenopause & menopause and its effects on individuals
  • The impact of perimenopause & menopause in the workplace
  • Strategies for supporting perimenopausal &menopausal employees
  • Tips for individuals currently experiencing perimenopause & menopause

 

Watch the full recording below

 

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