Enterprise earned yet another accolade for being an inclusive, diverse employer that has demonstrated progress toward improving social mobility in the workplace. Enterprise received this honour for being one of the top 50 employers in the U.K.’s first-ever Social Mobility Employer Index.
The inaugural list — compiled by the Social Mobility Foundation, Social Mobility Commission and the City of London Corporation — ranks U.K. companies on what they’re doing to be open to talent from all backgrounds. Enterprise ranked No. 10 on the list for the work undertaken to enable those from lower socio-economic backgrounds to succeed.
Experiencing social mobility first hand
Ashley Hever, Talent Acquisition Director for the U.K. and Ireland, knows first-hand about the initiatives Enterprise has in place to improve inclusiveness among potential new hires and employees. His own experience 20 years ago opened his eyes to what it really entails.
“I graduated from the University of Hull with a 2:2 in criminology,” says Ashley, who was the first in his family to pursue a university education. “I was unable to apply to most of the large graduate programmes in the U.K., and it was Enterprise that gave me an opportunity when I joined as a Graduate Management Trainee.
“Today, now two decades later, not much has changed in the U.K. around the philosophy about social mobility,” he adds. “A student who graduates with a 2.2 or poor UCAS points will still face barriers when applying for jobs. That’s what sets Enterprise apart from many other companies on the list.”
Studies show that people from more affluent backgrounds take a disproportionate number of the best jobs and employers tend to disproportionately employ graduates who attended private schools and elite universities. Fortunately, at Enterprise this isn’t the case.
As an employer, Ashley says Enterprise is less concerned with what university candidates attended and what course they chose, than with the potential that they have. “We want to reach the best talent regardless of race, background, where they live or even their chosen educational path. In order to do that, we need to ensure that every point of the education and employment cycle is fair, open to all and free from bias. Social mobility opens you up to a far deeper talent pool and brings you into contact with driven, ambitious people with talents that might be overlooked.”
Nearly 100 employers across 17 industries submitted entries based on how they promoted social mobility, including the work they did with students, recruitment, selection and progression. A panel of experts then determined the final rankings. The purpose of the list was two-fold: to encourage employers to share best practices and to broaden their reach of employing graduates from all socio-economic backgrounds.
Ashley states tracking social mobility has become part of the Enterprise culture. “We track applicants from a diversity perspective and social mobility is no different.” he adds. “We’re proud of our data and share it with employees and students through the career service centres at many universities.”
“Being ranked in the top 10 shows that our doors are open to people of all backgrounds who are promoted solely on their talent and ability to deliver exceptional customer service,” says Donna Miller, Vice President, Human Resources in Europe. She adds. “If you look at some of the awards we’ve won this year — the TargetJobs diversity award, the National Undergraduate Awards diversity award, being included as one of The Times’ Top 50 Employers Where Women Want to Work for the twelfth year running, and now among the top 10 employers promoting social mobility — it affirms our commitment to diversity and inclusion. And that makes Enterprise a great place to work.”
These awards show Enterprise really is committed to being an inclusive place to work, which judges people only on their talent and their willingness to do well in the company. This way of thinking can be traced back to our Founding Values, and have been part of the Enterprise way since we were founded in 1957.
If you are interested in being part of a welcoming, award-winning business, search and apply for one of our roles based in any one of our 450 branches across the UK.