Introduction

The BT Group Manifesto was launched in 2021 and is our plan to deliver our third strategic pillar of 'leading the way to a bright, sustainable future'. It is a vehicle for telling the story of what a bright, sustainable future looks like, how we connect for good and BT’s leadership as a stakeholder business. It also ensures we have a voice on issues that will shape our future growth and success.

The BT Group Manifesto outlines our ambitious goals for change across three core beliefs: 

Responsible

We believe new technology must earn trust and transform life for the better. That’s why we aim to become the world’s most trusted connector of people, devices and machines. 

Inclusive

Our push to become a more inclusive business will never stop. That’s because we know that the future of tech must be inclusive and diverse for everyone to benefit and beyond.

Sustainable

Climate action momentum has never been greater, but the world needs us to move faster. We have already switched to renewable electricity, and now we are pushing further ahead, developing innovative solutions to speed up decarbonisation and progress towards a circular economy.

We recognise that Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) is not just a ‘nice thing to do’, it’s critical to our growth. Our commitment to D&I remains resolute and unwavering. 

Across BT Group, we are committed to embedding diversity and inclusion into everything that we do. It remains fundamental to our purpose: we connect for good.

Philip Jansen Chief Executive

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Diversity and Inclusion Report 2022
Diversity and Inclusion Report 2022

This is our second Diversity & Inclusion report. It includes our fifth Gender pay gap report, our second voluntary Ethnicity pay gap report, and the initiatives we have delivered in 2021 to build a diverse and inclusive BT Group. The report also highlights the progress we have made so far towards achieving our diversity targets in relation to women, ethnic minority colleagues and disabled colleagues.

Our D&I ambition

Our inaugural workforce and leadership ambitions and targets, announced in 2021 in relation to attracting, recruiting, and retaining women, people from ethnic minority groups and disabled people, reflect our commitment to making BT Group fully diverse and inclusive. 

Our 2030 ambitions

By 2030, we aim to have a workforce made up of:

Our 2030 workforce ambitions
Our 2030 workforce ambitions

1 Global workforce
2 UK workforce only due to data limitations and based on declared data only.

To help guide progress towards our 2030 ambitions, we have set stretching targets for 2025 in relation to women, ethnic minority and disabled colleagues for different parts of our business. 

Our 2025 targets include for the whole of BT Group (including Openreach), targets for the leadership teams across BT Group, including Openreach, and targets for BT Group, excluding Openreach. We have deliberately made these distinctions due to the significantly different colleague demographics within Openreach, which are more typical of an engineering business.

All of our targets for women relate to our global workforce, whereas our targets for ethnic minority, Black and disabled colleagues relate only to our UK colleagues, and is based on declared data only. The different legislative frameworks, that vary from country to country, and cultural factors where we operate, prevent us from being able to collect and process accurate data in relation to ethnicity and disability outside of the UK.

We are making gradual progress towards achieving our 2025 D&I targets and 2030 ambitions.

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The D&I interventions that we are delivering to create a culture in which everyone feels included are focused on three areas: recruitment and attraction, better conversion rates and improved retention of our existing talent.

Ambitions into actions

D&I at BT

Our approach to D&I is evidence-based and intersectional, recognising that our colleagues and customers have diverse needs and intersecting identities. Our mission is to ensure that D&I at BT are key differentiators for our colleagues and customers and that we deliver a positive impact to wider society.

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We have established an effective D&I governance process that ensures an inclusive approach which values D&I is consistently integrated when making key decisions. We have five clear strategic priorities:

  • A representative workforce that reflects the different regions in which we operate.

  • Inclusive, innovative culture where people feel respected, engaged and able to speak out and this translates into innovative inclusive design for customers – creating differentiation for BT.

  • A best practice inclusive design approach is embedded into our policies, practices and offerings for all our people and customers.

  • We’re proactively using digital technology to connect for good and actively removing barriers to learning to ensure fairness and inclusion. This is essential for our business and nation, now and in the future.

  • Strong external reputation for leading the D&I agenda through bold action, research, influencing others in industry and sharing best practice.

Partnering across our business to deliver inclusion

We believe that everyone has a role to play in making our business truly diverse and inclusive. While the D&I Centre of Expertise oversees our overarching D&I approach, strategy and portfolio, several group-wide functions and teams deliver programmes and interventions aimed at making BT even more diverse and inclusive.

  • 36.4% of our Board members, Executive Committee members, and 26.1% of our senior leadership teams are women.

    Accelerate - Our new talent development programme for high potential middle managers has a fast stream for women.

    Building on our partnership with Code First Girls, we have sponsored Nanodegree, a learning bootcamp for women interested in technology careers.

    We signed the Menopause Workplace Pledge to signify our commitment to supporting all colleagues affected by menopause.

    Our Gender Equality Network (GEN) continues to play a critical role as we work towards having a gender balanced workforce.

    In India, we have been able to achieve a maternity returner rate of over 90%.

  • We now have two Board directors from ethnic minority backgrounds.

    156 ethnic minority colleagues participating in Accelerate have been provided with external senior mentors.

    41% of new graduate joiners came from ethnic minority backgrounds, an increase on 29% last year.

    We continue to partner  with The Aleto Foundation.  The annual leadership programme had 417 delegates and 33 BT mentors.

    A new partnership with 10,000 Black Interns led to a pilot programme where participants were offered paid internships.

    As part of our Ethnicity Rapid Action Plan (ERAP), the mandatory ‘Let’s Talk about Race’ training has been rolled out to all colleagues. All Executive Committee members, and over 100 senior leaders have also participated in the reverse mentoring programme.

    Sixty Black middle managers have participated in the McKinsey Black Leadership programme.

    Our Ethnic Diversity Network (EDN) continues to act as a strategic D&I partner.

  • We launched our Disability Rapid Action Plan (DRAP) – with four measurable commitments - to accelerate the pace of progress we are making to support disabled and neurodiverse colleagues, and those that have an impairment, or a long-term health condition.

    We have renewed our status as a Disability Confident Leader, signifying our commitment to disability inclusion.

    Our Accessibility, Inclusion and Disability (AID) group refreshed our support for customers and colleagues who have different needs. Over 17,000 advisers have now completed training

    The launch of the People With Disabilities (PWD) India Network has seen a re-energised focus on disability inclusion in India.

    Our Able2 Network continues to provide invaluable lived experience input into our D&I plans. 

  • We continued to deliver mental health campaigns and we have developed over 500 wellbeing champions across the entire business.

    The successful global rollout of our Peer-to-Peer Support Network will enable more volunteers help colleagues seeking confidential wellbeing support.

    To ensure we support our colleagues with caring responsibilities effectively, we have worked to achieve Carer Confident Level 2: Accomplished Status.

    Hope United, a nationwide campaign to educate the nation about the effects of online hate was launched in partnership with external agencies.

    We continue to work to diversify our supply chain and support micro and small suppliers.

    Our 11 People Networks continue to play a key role in ensuring we maintain an intersectional lens as we work to achieve our D&I ambitions.

    PRIDE India network was launched to help us build a strong foundation as an inclusive employer in India.

    BT Ireland continues to  organise the annual Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition and support the BITC Ireland ‘Employment for People from Immigrant Communities’ programme (EPIC) 

In 2018, we announced plans to improve our workplaces across the UK with more than 300 locations being consolidated to around 30 modern, future-fit buildings.

 

These ambitious plans comprise The Better Workplace Programme (TBWP), which has adopted an inclusive design approach with people at the heart of the design processes.

 

Coronavirus continues to present challenges to how we all work with each other, but we remain committed to providing inclusive workspaces where all our colleagues can collaborate effectively.

 

In 2021, two new BT buildings were opened, one in Birmingham and another in London. 

Our pay gaps

I am proud that BT remains committed to building a diverse and inclusive organisation that is fully representative of the different regions in which we operate.

Debbie White HR Director

2021 Gender pay gap

Our overall UK gender pay gap figures have increased marginally this year to 6.7% median and 5.0% at mean, versus 5.0% and 4.9% in 2020. While both the median and mean figures still sit significantly below the telecommunications industry, we are not complacent and we are doing more to attract, recruit and retain women in order to achieve balanced gender representation at all levels across the business. 

2021 Ethnicity pay gap

Although UK organisations are not legally required to publish their ethnicity pay gap, as part of our overall commitment to D&I, we have published our second Ethnicity pay gap (EPG) report.

At the snapshot date of 5 April 2021, our median (binary) ethnicity pay gap was -2.7%, an increase in its negative from -1.3% in 2020. The mean (binary) ethnicity pay gap has reduced slightly to 0.1%, down from 0.3% in 2020.

Like last year, our report has examined our UK EPG data in more granular detail. This is because we recognise that a binary ethnicity pay gap can mask the disparate issues that individuals and groups from different ethnic groups face at work and in wider society. Examining the data at a more granular level provides a more nuanced picture:

Pay gaps by ONS ethnic groups

Asian / Asian British

Black / African / Caribbean / Black British

Mixed / Multiple ethnic groups

Other ethnic group

We recognise that we currently have unequal representation of different ethnic minority groups across the different roles and levels within the business.  To address our current ethnicity pay gap, and improve ethnic diversity across BT Group, we are delivering a number of initiatives to attract, recruit and retain more people from ethnic minority backgrounds.

Looking ahead

The increased focus on D&I across the business has boosted engagement and supercharged our efforts to attract, recruit and retain colleagues from a wide range of backgrounds. We will continue to deliver our ambitious group-wide D&I strategy. 

  • We recognise that there is still work for us to do to close our gender and ethnicity pay gaps and achieve our diversity leadership and workforce targets that are currently focused on female representation, ethnicity and disability.

    As part of efforts to achieve proportional representation at all levels of the business, we will continue to establish diverse shortlists for senior roles. 

    Our in-house recruiters, hiring managers and assessors will continue to be provided with inclusive hiring training.

    We will build on the mandatory ‘Let’s Talk about Race’ training we have rolled out embed race awareness learning across the business.

    We will scale up our reverse mentoring programme to involve more senior leaders. 

    The Accelerate talent programme will be broadened  to support more women, ethnic minority colleagues and disabled colleagues. 

    Our mentoring and returner programmes will be expanded in our Global business unit to support more women. 

    We will build on relationships with external partners so we attract and engage more women, disabled people, and people from ethnic minority backgrounds to BT Group.

  • We recognise that achieving our current diversity leadership and workforce targets, is only one measure of how diverse and inclusive we are, so we will ensure we maintain an intersectional approach as we continue to develop and deliver D&I initiatives that aim to make everyone in the business feel included. 

    As signatories of the Social Mobility Pledge, we remain committed to providing employment and development opportunities to people from disadvantaged backgrounds and circumstances.

    Our revamped hiring guidance will be rolled out so that hiring managers remain conscious of all aspects of diversity when making hiring decisions.

    In our Consumer unit, we will launch our Allyship Ambassador programme and in our Global unit, we plan to launch an Allies Community.

    We will roll out new Inclusive Leadership learning content as part of our ‘Belonging at BT’ resources. 

  • We are launching a new central HR system - My HR. With quick self-service at its core, it will simplify the way we work. Colleagues will be provided with the right tools and information to navigate HR processes with ease, as well as manage and update their personal data. With My HR in the UK, we have expanded the categories available for colleagues to provide their diversity information. Improved diversity information will ensure that the work we are doing to make BT Group more diverse and inclusive continues to be evidence-based and shaped by colleagues’ needs.