NHS Digital has pledged to increase its diversity so that one in five employees are Black, Asian or from ethnic minority groups by 2025.
This would bring it into line with the average for the NHS.
The public body, which employs around 3,500 people across England, said it is striving for 19% of its staff to be Black, Asian or from minority ethnic groups, 14% to be disabled and 50% to be female by 2025. It currently employs 45% female, 13% Black, Asian or minority ethic and 5% disabled staff.
It is also implementing a range of measures to support diversity and inclusion in the organisation, including: understanding and improving the experience of existing staff from under-represented groups; offering positive action development opportunities aimed at them; improving internal and external recruitment and selection processes; wider outreach and engagement to promote itself as an inclusive employer; and focusing on diversity among employees joining its ranks.
Simon Bolton, interim chief executive at NHS Digital, said: “Setting workforce representation targets is a symbol of our, and my personal, serious intent to make a difference. It certainly is not a quick fix; however, it is a visible and public acknowledgement of our current position and acceptance to be held to account.
“It signals our commitment to work much harder to retain and develop our existing diverse talent and to do things differently to engage and attract colleagues from all backgrounds. This is particularly important in our senior leadership roles where we know we need to do better.
“Having a more diverse workforce is only part of the solution, and we need to work to make NHS Digital a truly inclusive environment.”
Image from NHS Digital