We believe that our people are key to our success. At NEL we employ over 2000 staff and we work hard to ensure all our people are able to be their best. We invest in the development of our people to enable them to have a great career with NEL and beyond, recognising the benefits that come from attracting and retaining the best talent to deliver effective services across health and social care.
As an organisation that takes diversity and inclusion seriously we are open in reporting our diversity performance and action plans. We were the first Commissioning Support Unit to sign up to NHS Workforce Race Equality Standard (WRES) in 2015, publishing our first baseline report in August 2015. The report provided race equality data on staff employed in the CSU and showed how we were performing against the nine WRES indicators. We have since completed our WRES for 2016-17 which demonstrates our actions for the year ahead and the progress that we are making year on year.
We are a transparent organisation and are committed to creating a diverse workforce and an inclusive organisation supporting a culture that accepts, respects and embraces diversity. For this reason, we have launched several staff networks to represent and support our staff who have an interest in the BME, LGBT, staff with disabilities and All Faith and None.
Black Minority Ethnic Network
Our Black Minority Ethnic (BME) Staff Network aims to help us recognise and remove the barriers that BME staff experience. The network seeks to uphold the ethics and principles of the race equality legislation and work, with the support of the CSU towards improving the recruitment, career prospects and opportunities for BME staff.
Ability and Inclusion Network
As a successful organisation, we want to attract and retain a diverse workforce that reflects our local communities. We care about our staff and want to ensure we are providing a safe, positive and inspiring working environment where everybody is supported to achieve their full potential.
Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender and Allies Network
Our Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender and Allies (LGBT) Staff Network exists for staff who consider themselves to be LGBT or who have an interest in the LGBT agenda. We value the contributions of our diverse workforce and want to ensure that all our existing and future staff feel they are treated fairly and with respect.
All Faith and None Network
We recognise that people with different backgrounds, beliefs, attitudes and experiences bring fresh ideas and perceptions. The All Faith and None Network aims to promote mutual respect and understanding of all religions and beliefs, including no faith.
Gender Pay Gap
On 31 March 2017, one day before the newly merged NEL was established, the SE CSU pay gap was significantly higher at 15.3 per cent than the NEL pay gap at 8.5 per cent. By 31 October 2017, our pay gap was 7.8 per cent and the median UK gender pay gap was 18.4 per cent.
We are performing significantly better than national average; however the pay gap reinforces our focus on equality of opportunity and career progression. We are committed to continuing to drive forward our Diversity and Inclusion strategy this year and will identify actions to address the gender pay gap as part of improving the experiences of staff to make our organisation truly inclusive.