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Equality and diversity in the workplace is becoming more and more important, with many digital marketing agencies taking steps to ensure that employees feel fairly represented, Stellar Search being one of them. With International Women’s Day approaching on 8th March, expect to see events and talks popping up over the following week discussing the importance of equality at work, and what we can do to create a diverse workplace. The benefits to be gained as a result are numerous – in fact, companies that are gender and ethnically diverse are up to 35% more likely to outperform than the industry median.

Hiring for diversity

Creating an equal, diverse workplace starts at a job application. Hiring for diversity means giving all applicants for a position of equal consideration, regardless of their gender, age, race, religion, or disability. According to the IPA 2018 diversity study, in 2018, 12.4% of UK creative agency employees identified as BAME, compared with 10.7% in 2017.

The team at Stellar Search come from various countries across Europe and beyond, with an impressive ten or more languages being spoken in the office, and with our own founder, Stelios Pardalakis hailing from Crete. 

Without a diverse hiring process, this rich workplace culture would not be possible. Digital marketing agencies need to make every effort to diversify recruitment, as well as supporting employees and offering equal promotion opportunities throughout their time at the company. Marketing is a fantastic field for diversity, so all agencies should make the most of the rich talent pool when it comes to hiring. The benefits include: increased creativity from the multitude of different world views, a wider range of skills and experiences, higher employee retention, and an overall better rep for your company. 

Empowering women in the workplace

In recent years, women have continued the fight for equality in the workplace, and we are starting to witness these efforts paying off. The gender pay gap and the percentage of women in senior and top-level positions are seeing gradual successes. The 2018 IPA diversity study found that across all agencies, more women work in the industry than men, or 52.6% versus 47.4%. 

However, the majority of these women are in mid-level and junior roles, with only  38% of women holding management positions and a mere 21% are C-suite executives – there is still much to be done when it comes to promoting women to the more senior roles. At Stellar Search, the male/female split is 40/60, and in Sarajevo it’s 45/55, with 66% of our senior positions being occupied by women, an impressive achievement. 

Equality for parents at work

When employees decide they want to start a family, it’s important to let them know that they will continue to be supported by the company, both during and after maternity or paternity leave. If employees return to work after paternity or maternity leave, this will improve loyalty in your workforce and make working at your company a more attractive prospect – plus you’ll likely reduce your employee turnover costs looking for replacements as it costs around a third of someone’s salary to replace them. 

In September 2019, Campaign asked the UK’s biggest creative, digital and media agencies about their policies on paternity and maternity leave and flexible working. Of the 40 agencies that responded, a wide range of pay and benefits was reported. However, all agencies offer some form of enhanced benefits, and all agencies stated that they offered flexible working. 

Stellar Search understands the importance of this, which is why we offer shared paternity and maternity leave. Parents with young children are given childcare flexibility, meaning they can change their working days to best suit their needs, or even bring their kids into the office!

“I’ve always had complete flexibility when it comes to managing my workload with family life here at Stellar – having children has been, not just accepted, but welcomed into the office!”

Laura Taylor – Client Manager

Other ways to make your workplace diverse

Giving talks on workplace diversity and equality will help to educate employees on diversity and inclusion and spread the message, as well as regular updates on how your agency is performing and meeting equality and diversity goals. Encourage employees to be themselves at work, and share experiences, thoughts and opinions with others.