Leading by example

Championing a fair, inclusive and ethical business from the inside.

 

At O2, we believe in creating a fairer future for everyone, and this starts with our people. We are passionate about ensuring that everyone at O2 is supported to grow, develop and progress. We are clear about the critical value a diversity of backgrounds and perspectives brings to our business.

Our Business Principles act as our ethical code of conduct, helping to guide and inform our behaviour and decision-making at all levels of our business. We continue to focus on building an inclusive and ethical culture where our people understand and take responsibility for maintaining the highest standards of professionalism and integrity in their day to day work.

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Striving for an inclusive and representative workforce

We’re setting our sights on becoming a truly representative business by 2025, ensuring that across all levels of our business, we achieve a 50:50 gender balance, alongside Black, Asian and minority ethnic representation of at least 15% thereby reflecting the UK population.

To support our 2025 goals, we have set internal year-on-year progress targets within each business function to ensure that our senior leaders remain focused and accountable for our progress to deliver a truly representative workforce. Our current targets include levels of gender, ethnicity and age representation, with the aim of extending these to include disability, sexual orientation and social mobility over the next five years.

View our targets in focus

 

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Taking positive action to drive equity and equality

We’ve learnt a lot in the last few years and have made several bold moves in tangible support of our commitment to becoming a leading inclusive employer. We’re embedding inclusivity into everything that we do to ensure that our people - all of them, and the customers that we serve, can show up authentically. A recent example includes the introduction of our Family Leave policy in 2019 - this policy offers all of our people 14 weeks paid leave to spend time with their new families; heterosexual, same-sex, gender diverse*, adoptive and surrogate parents.

 

In supporting our colleagues from diverse backgrounds, we continue to take positive action to drive greater equity in all of our approaches to recruitment, engagement, development and progression. This includes bespoke development initiatives, mentoring and work experience opportunities specifically targeted at our Black, Asian, ethnic minority, female and gender diverse colleagues. And mandating diversity in shortlists for recruitment and talent development investment.

*Gender diversity is about acknowledging and respecting that there are many ways to identify outside of the binary of male and female.
 

 

 

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Building effective allyship and cultural competence

Building effective allyship is a key part of nurturing an inclusive culture. We’ve launched an Inclusion Allies programme, focussed on building empathy, understanding and inclusive behaviours across our workforce. We’re also expanding our reverse mentoring programme and continue to invest in cultural competence training for our Board and Senior Leadership team. We’ve mandated Conscious Inclusion training for all hiring managers to continue our focus on equitable and inclusive hiring decisions. Our commitment to make the improvements, drive the change and champion equity and equality will help to create a fairer future for everyone.

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Demonstrating our accountability and commitment

Accountability, commitment, and transparency are at the heart of our drive for change. We have chosen, from 2020, to voluntarily publish our Ethnicity Pay Gap data, alongside our Gender Pay Gap data. We believe that transparency in reporting will assist us in advancing the representation and progression of ethnic minorities in our business, while reinforcing to our people that diversity and inclusion remains a strategic priority at O2. We report quarterly on progress internally against our diversity targets and via our Responsible Business Taskforce. We recognise the importance of this transparency in embedding accountability and focusing our actions.

Changing the make-up of our workforce, and reducing our pay gaps, we know takes time. We have made progress – but we know that there’s more work to do, as we continue our journey to become one of the UK’s leading inclusive employers.

 

A responsible business objective

At O2, we believe in mobilising the skills and talents of our people to support our responsible business goals. We’ll continue to ask all our employees to set an annual Blueprint objective to support the delivery of our plan. We’ll find creative ways to engage our people, raising awareness of climate and social issues and mobilising our workforce to volunteer and fundraise, sharing their skills and talents to make a positive difference.

More about Our Blueprint