Interim report published by IMI Diversity Task Force

Published:  06 January, 2022

The lack of diversity in the sector, a factor seen as exacerbating the ongoing skills crisis, is being addressed in the first interim report from the IMI Diversity Task Force, which has been published today (Thursday 6 January).

The Task Force was launched in April 2021. Today’s report looks at the initial progress made by the Industry Expert Panel and the three working groups that make up the Task Force, which was formed to seek out ways for the automotive industry to appeal to a more diverse workforce.

IMI President Professor Jim Saker commented: “Even before we started this project, we were aware that there was much that we did not know. Identifying the gaps in knowledge was the first and most important task for our experts to undertake and we are enormously grateful to everyone who has embraced this huge undertaking by getting involved, enabling the work to move at a faster pace than we dared hope.

“The first nine months have challenged and energised our experts, highlighting many gaps in knowledge and demonstrating that small adjustments can bring about significant improvement. Now, each Working Group has presented their initial findings as well as several proposals to improve diversity within the automotive industry and we look forward to presenting the full report and final recommendations ahead of the IMI Dinner on 17 March 2022.”

The Race and Ethnicity Working Group, Physical and Non-Visible Disabilities Working Group, and the Gender Identity Working Group all presented general recommendations, as well as focused suggestions around their area.

Race and Ethnicity Working Group Chair and Chair of the IMI Board Kevin Finn FIMI said: “As a business leader, I want to make positive changes, and so wanted to fully understand the challenges and issues around diversity and inclusion.”

Physical and non-Non-Visible Disabilities Working Group Chair and IMI Vice President Sarah Sillars OBE Hon FIMI observed: “There is no real data in our sector but some great case studies, policies and best practice to help shape our thinking. However, the real upside is the group have new ideas. The next stage is to try to bring the abundance of input from all the group together. We’re thinking ‘small change for big wins’.”

Gender Identity Working Group Chair, Peugeot CEO and IMI Vice President Linda Jackson Hon FIMI added: “We are pulling on the ‘real life’ experience of our group members and also looking across best practice already in place. Our combined ambition is to make a difference and offer pragmatic proposals to our industry through the development of key principles to embrace a culture of diversity.”

To download the full Interim Report, visit: https://tide.theimi.org.uk/about-imi/diversity-task-force

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