Headlines: April 7th, 2015

New measures are being brought in by the Cabinet Office to ensure that civil servants from under-represented or disadvantaged groups can succeed in the civil service.

An updated version of the September 2014 Talent Action Plan sets out measures to remove barriers and ensure that the most talented people succeed and reach the top positions, regardless of who they are and what their background is.

The updated Talent Action Plan has been developed based on the findings of research commissioned by the government to examine barriers to progression currently faced by civil servants. The research covered civil servants from black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds, those declaring a disability or health condition and those who identify themselves as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender.

The updated plan includes introducing an intensive 2-year programme to support departments and agencies to implement the Plan and fully integrate diversity and inclusion into all their HR processes.

A new central diversity and inclusion unit will bring together existing teams across government and it will include diversity and inclusion non-executive directors with a proven track record who will hold the civil service to account on this agenda.

There will be a new talent programme which will raise the visibility and aspiration of diverse talent offering leadership training and development to produce a larger pool of diverse talent.

To allow employees with a disability or health condition to move more easily between departments, a single disability passport will be created in 2015 for all departments.

Minister for the Cabinet Office Francis Maude said:
Our goal is simple: we want the civil service to draw on the widest possible pool of talent. For too long, talented civil servants from under-represented and disadvantaged groups have failed to reach the highest levels. We have now examined the actual barriers they face and this refreshed Talent Action Plan is designed to address them. We should be judged by what we achieve not what we are promising.

Cabinet Secretary and Head of the Civil Service Sir Jeremy Heywood said: Our Talent Action Plan is designed to ensure that the most talented civil servants, regardless of their background, can progress quickly and fulfil their potential. The civil service already benefits from a more diverse talent pool than many British employers, but we can do even better. Above all, the collective leadership of the civil service is committed to creating a truly diverse workforce that delivers the best for Britain.