Data collection and diversity audit research to identify components for future success at this world leader.
Lloyd’s Register is a marine classification society and world leading provider of professional services for engineering and technology. Dating back to 1760, their work now reaches 75+ countries to improve safety and increase the performance of critical infrastructures. Their global workforce exceeds 6,000 employees and profits generated by the organisation fund the Lloyd’s Register Foundation, their charity that supports engineering-related research, education and public engagement linking to their work.
EW Group has worked with Lloyd’s Register since 2019, and during our partnership, we have supported the progression of Lloyd’s Register’s inclusive culture and the evolution of their diversity strategy. Lloyd’s Register first commissioned us to deliver an Inclusive Leadership programme for their extended leadership teams, as well as specialist training and consultancy for their HR Leadership Team.
We have subsequently worked with colleagues from across their global HR department to examine how unconscious bias might take hold across workstream areas (recruitment, appraisal, talent, and development), and in 2020, our co-founder Annie Hedge designed a D&I Ambassador’s programme for their internal working group responsible for driving the diversity and inclusion agenda. The curriculum supported and refined the team’s expertise of workplace challenges around gender, ethnicity, accessibility, LGBT+, age, and care.
More recently, Lloyd’s Register tasked us with exploring how their systems, policies and processes are being applied worldwide. The aim was to ensure that people policies demonstrate best practice from a D&I perspective, and to provide recommendations to develop Lloyd’s Register’s ambitious three-year diversity strategy.
Led by a group of our expert diversity consultants, we conducted a detailed Diversity Audit that assessed Lloyd’s Register’s people-related policies, systems, and processes through a diversity and inclusion lens. The Audit explored global and regional policies – both what’s on paper, but also how this is being applied by Managers. The brief was to understand what works well, where processes might be susceptible to unconscious bias, and where there are practices within areas which could either be improved, or learned from, at a global level.
How we conducted the work
EW Group Leadership and Diversity Consultant, Sam Hernandez, led the delivery of this work, supported by two of our international diversity specialists, Fook-Mun Chung and Sam Goober. We set out by reviewing more than sixty people-related policies at both regional and global levels, to explore where systems might not fully account for difference or be holistically inclusive. We also looked for opportunities where Lloyd’s Register could further champion diversity through their policies and strategy.
We then conducted focus groups with over 125 colleagues and leaders across six global regions (UK and Ireland; North Europe; South Europe; the Americas; North Asia; and South Asia, Middle East and Africa). Gathering this qualitative data of first-hand experience was critical for understanding how Managers apply policy, and the experiences of staff regarding their employment at Lloyd’s Register within the existing systems. We conducted six focus groups for colleagues, six focus groups for managers, and twelve focus groups for HR leads and colleagues, each one focusing on a different aspect of the employee lifecycle; attraction and recruitment, global mobility, learning and development, and progression and promotion.
Our team also held one-to-one sessions with policy owners within the Leadership Team, Head of Global Operations, Head of Talent and Leadership Development, Global Head of Resourcing, and Regional HR Managers.
Finally, the consulting team regrouped to look for any patterns within the organisation – what does the demographic data suggest could be happening across the globe, and what are the differing experiences for colleagues region to region? Do variations in regional policies impact on employee experience and inclusion?
What the audit found
Following the research stage of the Diversity Audit, we provided detailed recommendations in a final report. We outlined steps that Lloyd’s Register could take to further harness equality and inclusion to the core of their decision-making, strategy and policies. The recommendations included:
- Widen diversity data collection so that Lloyd’s Register has a robust evidence base on which to make future decisions.
- Revisit promotion and appraisal policies. A specific recommendation of ours was around global mobility – whereby European colleagues relocating to Asia regions, as opposed to international colleagues relocating to European offices, were found to have access to more support around cultural adaptability.
- Sustain senior management buy-in to their diversity strategy and goals.
- Proudly communicate their strategy and commitment to D&I to the entire organisation, in all global regions.
- Harness the enthusiasm and expertise of staff by creating a structure and updating processes to enable inclusion and equal opportunities at a global scale.
“EW tailored the D&I audit to focus exactly where we needed. They were flexible and available, and Sam [Hernandez] was a great partner to engage with our steering group and leadership team. The outcomes have formed the basis of our three-year Belonging strategy, and I’m looking forward to having another audit in three years to see how far we’ve come!”
Rebecca Berry, Director of Culture, Diversity and Inclusion at Lloyd’s Register
The practical outcomes following the Audit has already helped Lloyd’s Register to continue their diversity and inclusion journey. The launch of their three-year diversity strategy was underpinned by the Audit’s findings, which will project Lloyd’s Register as an industry advocate for inclusion.
We were amazed by the level of engagement and support that their senior leadership and Board pledged to the Audit. We look forward to continuing our partnership with Lloyd’s Register.
“Working with LR was an extremely enriching experience both at a personal and at a professional level: a global organisation with a huge appetite for change, driven by operational excellence, daring to hold up the mirror and really address its diversity gaps. I cannot wait to see LR in the not-so-distant future actively driving inclusion in the industry and firmly positioned as a thought leader.”
Sam Hernandez, Lead Consultant