Leading global law firm Baker McKenzie has been named as one of the UK’s Best Employers for Race in a new listing published for the first time today by the charity Business in the Community. The Firm was also shortlisted for the Business in the Community Race Equality Awards 2017.

The list includes 65 public and private sector organisations who collectively represent the best employers for Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) people in the UK. Its creation was one of the recommendations made in the McGregor-Smith Review of race in the workplace earlier this year to showcase best practice on race equality in UK workplaces. Successful organisations were required to evidence leadership on race, inclusive workplace cultures and action in at least one of three areas - leadership, progression and recruitment. They also had to be able to demonstrate the impact of these policies on BAME employees.

Commenting on the listing, Diversity & Inclusion Partner Sarah Gregory said:

Being a diverse and inclusive place to work is at the heart of Baker McKenzie's culture.

"Our ranking in the Best Employers for Race list is testament to that and reflects the progress we've made in increasing the representation of BAME talent across the office. Our recent Colour Brave campaign is a great example of that."

Sandra Kerr OBE, Race Equality Director at Business in the Community, added: “Congratulations to Baker McKenzie on being named in the first ever Best Employers for Race listing and as a Finalist in Business in the Community’s Race Equality Awards. They are taking a comprehensive and strategic approach to tackling racial inequalities within their organisation and have shown their strong commitment and leadership on this issue. I hope more employers will follow their examples of best practice and take part in the 2018 listing. If employers truly want their workplaces to reflect the clients, communities and customers they serve, the time to act is now.”

Earlier this month Baker McKenzie launched the Colour Brave campaign in its London office, which seeks to create an environment where people feel comfortable talking openly about race and ethnicity. It is one of a number of initiatives led by BakerEthnicity which focuses on increasing the representation of BAME talent in the office. Baker McKenzie was the first law firm, for example, to introduce name blind recruitment removing the potential for discrimination based on name. In 2015, Baker McKenzie partnered with Rare Recruitment to hardwire social mobility metrics into the existing graduate recruitment applicant tracking systems, enabling the Firm to take the economic background and personal circumstances of a candidate into account for the first time.

The Firm has also partnered with a number of key organisations, including Race for Opportunity, NOTICED, the BLD Foundation and the Black British Business Awards.

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