BIE is delighted to be part of the new initiative #10000BlackInterns.The programme, which has been launched two months after the successful #100BlackInterns initiative, will offer paid work experience across various sectors, as well as training and development opportunities and mentorship for the black community.
Catherine Osaigbovo, Director HR at BIE and I are proud to be part of the #10000BlackInterns steering committee focused on the recruitment sector, alongside Russell Reynolds, Odgers and SaintyHird. As well as helping to shape and develop this great initiative, our goal is to encourage a significant number of recruiters to sign up by the end of next year.
Given that so many young people will have missed out on training opportunities because of the pandemic, we are confident that #10000BlackInterns will help to open a number of doors for Black candidates, while also providing opportunities to a much more diverse pool of talent.
As a business, we have been facilitating discussions in the diversity and inclusion space for a while now, but the conversations sparked by #BlackLivesMatter has provided us with an opportunity to challenge ourselves, and those we work with. We have seen this act as a catalyst to a more rapid rate of change and it is important that we continue on this trajectory with actions not just rhetoric.
While there is still much more to do to level playing fields, it is reassuring to see the importance of diversity and inclusion is now finally at the heart of recruitment conversations and strategies. From being an almost non-existent prerequisite to a role, to one at the forefront of business decisions and candidate selection. Just recently we hosted an event on the importance of allyship, which had over 200 senior leaders sign up. It goes to show we are in a time and place to affect authentic business change and we must all play our part.
10000blackinterns is just one way in which we, as a business, can support and offer opportunities. It will not be the whole answer as companies will need to focus on longer-term solutions to create an inclusive culture in order to retain and develop its future leaders. But every journey is made of a number of steps and this is certainly one in the right direction.