Northern Ireland Civil Service retains Bronze Diversity Mark Accreditation

Huge congratulations to Northern Ireland Civil Service who has retained the Bronze Diversity Mark Accreditation for their ongoing commitment to advancing diversity and inclusion in the workplace. 

Since first achieving the Bronze Diversity Mark in November 2019, the Civil Service has continued to work to make improvements within all areas of diversity and inclusion.

Diversity Mark Head of Business, Nuala Murphy and Head of Civil Service, Jayne Brady.

Jayne Brady, Head of the Civil Service said:

“‘We are proud to have maintained our accreditation which recognises the ongoing commitment of the Civil Service to diversity and inclusion. We want to build a culture and working environment that brings out the best in us, where everyone can contribute and achieve their full potential. We have set new targets for the coming year and with the help of our diversity networks and Champions, along with NICSHR we look forward to making further progress.’

In achieving the Diversity Mark Accreditation the Civil Service have committed to an annual independent assessment and have set three gender diversity targets for the year ahead.

The Northern Ireland Civil Service want to build a culture and working environment that brings out the best in all employees, where everyone can contribute and achieve their full potential. 

Diversity Mark’s Interim Head of Business Nuala Murphy commented:

We are delighted that Northern Ireland Civil Service have maintained the Bronze Diversity Mark Accreditation. The Independent Assessment Panel applauded the energy and commitment displayed in the annual review and within the ongoing gender initiatives that Northern Ireland Civil Service are working on. As a high profile, major employer in Northern Ireland, it is vital that Northern Ireland Civil Service exemplifies good practice and influences the wider debate on gender equality. We congratulate everyone at Northern Ireland Civil Service on this wonderful achievement and we thoroughly look forward to working with them over the coming years.”

If you have not yet joined Diversity Mark on your company’s Diversity and Inclusion journey please reach out to emma@diversity-mark-ni.co.uk to discuss the benefits and process.

You can CLICK HERE to join Diversity Mark and work towards achieving the Diversity Mark accreditation.

Importance of challenging gender stereotypes and bias within education.

Helping children of all ages and all genders find inspiration and courage from women role models is key to education. Teaching children and young adolescents to actively question and openly challenge stereotypes and bias is important because it helps forge a more inclusive world.

It is for this reason that during the recent celebrations for International Women’s Day that an important collaboration with Puffin Schools provided practical and insightful classroom resources for teachers around the world. The education of children about gender issues is an important means by which equality can be driven.

See below the brilliant downloadable resources as inspiring classroom discussion starters to reinforce the important of gender concepts.

International Women’s Day videos

International Women’s Day school resources

Diversity Mark Signatory Primary Schools Holy Evangelists celebrated International Women’s Day by saying thank you to all their women in schools, their teachers, teaching assistants, secretaries, dinner ladies and cleaners, who day after day put first the children’s, nurturing and caring for their social, emotional and learning needs.

Local Preparatory School Inchmarlo and their Parents Association, recently surprised the Principal of RBAI Mrs Williamson and Head Teacher of Prep Mrs Morwood with flowers on International Women’s Day, to recognise their leadership at RBAI and Inchmarlo. Mrs Williamson was the first female (and youngest) to be a principal of a boys grammar school in the UK and Mrs Morwood first female head at Inchmarlo.

Principle Mrs Williamson, Nuala Murphy and Head Teacher Mrs Morwood

Our Interim Head of Business and member of of the Inchmarlo Parents Association Nuala Murphy was present on the day discussing the theme of ‘Break the Bias’ and highlighting the importance of changing the stereotypes of what leadership looks like.

If you have not yet joined Diversity Mark on your company’s Diversity and Inclusion journey please reach out to emma@diversity-mark-ni.co.uk to discuss the benefits and process.

You can CLICK HERE to join Diversity Mark and work towards achieving the Diversity Mark accreditation.

Staffline achieve Bronze Diversity Mark Accreditation

Staffline has been awarded the prestigious Bronze Diversity Mark Accreditation by Diversity Mark, marking its firm commitment to promoting greater gender equality and parity in the workplace. 

(L-R) Paula McDermott, Group HR Manager, Tina Nzeye, HR Systems Administrator, Sinead Sharpe, HR Director, John Kelso-Mason, Learning and Development Co-Ordinator.

As one of the leading recruitment firms across Ireland, Staffline has a 56% female senior leadership team and an impressive 68% of females in management roles.  Given its significant influence in the recruitment sector, this is a welcome trend which has received recognition from Diversity Mark. 

Speaking on the recent award to Staffline, Nuala Murphy Interim Head of Business at Diversity Mark said: 

“Diversity Mark is the leading authority on Diversity and Inclusion. The Bronze Diversity Mark accreditation is awarded to companies following an independent assessment process which ensures they have reached the required standard of commitment to advancing Gender Diversity and Inclusion in the workplace. Not only will it help attraction and retention of staff, but it will contribute to building a more equal, representative, and inclusive society that at the end of the day is good for our economy.”

Director of HR at Staffline, Sinead Sharpe said:

“Staffline Ireland is proud to be a diverse company, we believe our diversity is our strength, and only enhances the service we provide to our clients and workers. It’s our ongoing aim to maintain a truly inclusive workplace that diversity, equity and belonging is reflected in supportive employee training, benefits and policies. Staffline are especially pleased to endorse policies which ensure traditional barriers to gender equity are removed, including hybrid working, enhanced maternity pay policies, role salary bands which reflect the real UK living wage and performance-based promotions among others.”

Huge congratulations to all the team at Staffline on this achievement.

If you have not yet joined Diversity Mark on your company’s Diversity and Inclusion journey please reach out to emma@diversity-mark-ni.co.uk to discuss the benefits and process.

You can CLICK HERE to join Diversity Mark and work towards achieving the Diversity Mark accreditation.

Exploristics awarded Silver Diversity Mark Accreditation

Huge congratulations to Exploristics who have been awarded the Silver Diversity Mark in recognition of the milestones they have met and their ongoing commitment to increasing equality, diversity and inclusion in the workplace.

Aiden Flynn, Exploristics CEO

Aiden Flynn, Exploristics CEO said “I am thrilled that Exploristics has received this award. It is a testament to the dedication of our team who strive to ensure that we offer the most open, fair and inclusive work culture we can. We are grateful to Diversity Mark for providing us with the framework and guidance to help us achieve this, and by doing so supporting our efforts in attracting and retaining the best talent.”

Nuala Murphy, Interim Head of Business at Diversity Mark said “We are delighted that Exploristics have been awarded the Silver Diversity Mark in recognition of their progress and ongoing commitment to diversity and inclusion and we congratulate all the team on this very significant achievement. The independent assessment panel were impressed with their application, and the progress that has been made since embarking on their Diversity Mark journey. The energetic and committed approach adopted across the organisation from Board level through the committee to feedback from ground level is inspiring. We look forward to them continuing their progressive and innovative initiatives moving forward.”

Huge congratulations to all the team at Exploristics on this achievement.

If you have not yet joined Diversity Mark on your company’s Diversity and Inclusion journey please reach out to emma@diversity-mark-ni.co.uk to discuss the benefits and process.

You can CLICK HERE to join Diversity Mark and work towards achieving the Diversity Mark accreditation.

New Chartermark collaboration to deliver Diversity & Inclusion excellence across NI and beyond

Diversity Mark and Legal Island, two leading all-Ireland certification bodies, have joined forces to deliver a sole accreditation recognising diversity and inclusion (D&I) excellence in the workplace.

Nuala Murphy, Interim Head of Business at Diversity Mark and
Barry Phillips, Chairman at Legal Island.

A response to the growing demand for independent D&I accreditation in the pandemic era, the newly-formed Chartermark will enable organisations to establish targets and milestones on their path to greater inclusion.

Speaking on the collaboration, Nuala Murphy, Head of Diversity Mark, said:


“This is an exciting development for organisations as the newly-formed Chartermark offers the employer the very best of both worlds. It includes ambitious targets and milestones that will mark the D&I journey towards excellence in diversity and inclusion practices, with evidence of up-to-date D&I policies and all-staff D&I training required from February 2023.”

Since launching in 2016, Diversity Mark’s accreditation process has required organisations to set out clear goals and milestones relevant to D&I activity, all of which are thoroughly reviewed by independent assessors. The feedback provided then enables organisations to develop their D&I initiatives as they seek to build a more inclusive workforce. 

“We want companies to be courageous about change,” Nuala added. “Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion is a top organisational priority, particularly in the pandemic era, and as an awarding body we welcome organisations to reach out and begin their journey towards greater inclusion. Our community of signatories is growing rapidly across the rest of Ireland and the UK with public declarations to build workplaces where everyone feels seen, heard, and appreciated for who they are.”

With its focus on compliance and proactive training for all business sectors, coupled with its annual D&I Awards at Titanic Belfast, Legal Island has given unprecedented profile to the importance of robust D&I practices in organisations across Northern Ireland and beyond.

Barry Phillips, Chairman at Legal Island, added:

“We believe this combination of compliance and stretch targets is unique in the marketplace and it’s a really exciting development. At times, Northern Ireland has perhaps been considered something of a backwater for D&I activity. This development really positions us front and centre.

“No other region of the UK or indeed Ireland offers employers such a unique and thorough accreditation process, together with the opportunity for recognition at an annual D&I Awards evening.  Couple this with relevant and readily accessible online D&I training, and employers large and small across all sectors can expect to excel.”

If you have not yet joined Diversity Mark on your company’s Diversity and Inclusion journey please reach out to emma@diversity-mark-ni.co.uk to discuss the benefits and process.

You can CLICK HERE to join Diversity Mark and work towards achieving the Diversity Mark accreditation.

Bronze Diversity Mark Accreditation awarded to Mills Selig

Congratulations to Mills Selig who have been awarded the Bronze Diversity Mark in recognition of the law firm’s ongoing commitment to gender equality.

(L-R) Rebecca Logan, Solicitor, Mark Thompson, Senior Associate, Anne Skeggs, Partner and Head of Property and Peter Cashel, Solicitor, Mills Selig.

The local law firm which specialises in all matters of corporate law received the award following an independent assessment process which reviewed and evaluated their commitment to advancing diversity and inclusion.

With over 60 years in business, Mills Selig has frequently paid homage to its team for their continued growth and success. Many members of the team have been with the firm for a decade or longer, a testament to the strong ethics of entire Mills Selig team. With a majority female board, Mills Selig prides itself on awarding employees on the basis of meritocracy alone.

Welcoming the bronze accreditation and looking to the future of the firm, Anne Skeggs, Head of Property and Partner said:

“Receiving the bronze accreditation is excellent recognition of how we live out our values and how we operate as a team. Mills Selig is continuously evolving, growing and expanding and we want to continue adjusting and improving the working environment to ensure all our employee needs are met in an inclusive way.

“We recognise and understand that by developing a strong diversity and inclusion strategy, our team will grow, flourish and benefit as a result.”

The Diversity Mark Accreditation is a ‘Mark of Progress’ that publicly declares commitment to building more diverse and inclusive workplaces to benefit all employees.

Congratulating Mills Selig on their bronze accreditation, Nuala Murphy from Diversity Mark said:

“We are delighted that Mills Selig has been awarded the Bronze Diversity Mark Accreditation for their commitment to advancing Diversity in the workplace. Awarded by our Independent Assessment Panel who commended the organised approach being taken which involves visible leadership throughout the organisation and the inclusion of staff at all levels. Huge congratulations to everyone at Mills Selig on this progressive achievement.”

If you have not yet joined Diversity Mark on your company’s Diversity and Inclusion journey please reach out to emma@diversity-mark-ni.co.uk to discuss the benefits and process.

You can CLICK HERE to join Diversity Mark and work towards achieving the Diversity Mark accreditation.

Diversity Mark – Fourth in Series of Industry Events

We recently hosted our fourth in the series of industry events: Building a truly diverse and inclusive workplace ‘Breaking Down the Barriers’ with Allstate NI.

Diversity Mark has seen great growth in the technology and professional services sector so for this event we brought together some visionary leaders to share their journeys and insights with our community of existing and future signatories.

The focus and importance of data was a consistent them when getting started and measuring success. We discussed recruitment and retention, culture and belonging and the importance of a framework and structure when embarking upon a mark of progress.

Nuala Murphy our Interim Head of Business kicked off the event by welcoming John Healy Managing Director of Allstate NI who spoke regarding the importance of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.

“The reason we are involved with Diversity Mark is simple, because it is part of our shared purpose, our values and it feeds directly into employee engagement and satisfaction, and it drives the performance of our business.” John Healy

Nuala jumped right into the panel Q&A starting with Allstate’s Lesley Miller asking her about her inspiration; motivation and determination to lead in this space. Lesley shared how, coming from a big family of boys and girls there were no stereotypes established in her home with great parental support she always felt she could do and be anything.

Key take-aways of the event included:

  • Intersectionality: “Through an awareness of intersectionality, we can better acknowledge and ground the differences among us.”

  • Data: Its role and importance.

  • 3 R’s – Representation in building a culture from the first interaction with your company from recruitment and how building a culture where everyone can bring their full selves to work enables retention.

Core theme through all above was the importance of communication, being clear and creating the right place and time to share goals and intention. Own your timing to deliver maximum impact.

Jonathan Patel of Aspiring Solicitors joined us to explain who they are and the barriers they are breaking down within social mobility and the law sector, after recently partnering with Silver Accredited A&L Goodbody.

Julianne Miles CEO and Co-Founder of Women Returners spoke on the opportunities they can provide to both employees and employers and how deliberate we have to be in acknowledging bias in order to see successful outcomes.

“We know it’s not just one thing that is needed, its systemic change and challenge across society and the economy at large. But we can all start somewhere and do what we can with what we have.” Nuala Murphy

Lesley Miller Senior Manager at Allstate NI “You cannot improve what you do not measure.”

David Mulholland CEO at Bar NI “Challenging ourselves to see what we can do and not what we cant do.”

Jill Michael Talent Manager at A&L Goodbody “Talent is everywhere but opportunity is not”

Kerri Bradley HR Director at Cleaver Fulton Rankin “It is all about timing and communication”

Honey-Bell Oke Diversity and Inclusion Lead at Version 1 “Creating awareness, providing training and empowering employees”

Event panelists

Thank you to everyone that attended the session. The event was recorded and can be sent upon request to our Diversity Mark community by emailing info@diversity-mark-ni.co.uk.

Keep your eyes peeled for the details of our upcoming 2022 events.

If you have not yet joined Diversity Mark on your company’s Diversity and Inclusion journey please reach out to info@diversity-mark-ni.co.uk to discuss the benefits and process.

You can CLICK HERE to join Diversity Mark and work towards achieving the Diversity Mark accreditation.

Qarik Awarded Bronze Diversity Mark Accreditation

We are delighted to announce that Qarik have been awarded the Bronze Diversity Mark Accreditation in recognition of their ongoing commitment to diversity and inclusion in the workplace. 

The Bronze Accreditation is achieved following an independent assessment to demonstrate the required standard of commitment to advancing diversity and inclusion and starts with the setting of three gender specific, diversity targets.

Claire McIntyre, Chief Operating Officer at Qarik Group commented:

“Being awarded the Bronze Diversity Mark is a demonstration of Qarik’s commitment to ensure an inclusive and diverse workplace for current and future employees. Qarik is a family-focused company that believes that no one should be at a disadvantage professionally, financially, or socially. Qarik continues to invest in its future and continuing support for equality and inclusivity policies and practices to be upheld throughout the company.

We are proud to be recognised for our efforts to date and will continue to build as we see diversity, equality and inclusion essential for business.”

Nuala Murphy, Interim Head of Business at Diversity Mark said:

“We are thrilled that Qarik has been awarded the Bronze Diversity Mark Accreditation for their commitment to advancing Diversity in the workplace. Awarded by our Independent Assessment Panel who endorsed and welcomed the commitments made within their submission.

We congratulate everyone at Qarik on this achievement and we look forward to working with them as they develop their diversity initiatives over the coming years.”

Huge congratulations to all the team a Qarik on this achievement.

If you have not yet joined Diversity Mark on your company’s Diversity and Inclusion journey please reach out to emma@diversity-mark-ni.co.uk to discuss the benefits and process.

You can CLICK HERE to join Diversity Mark and work towards achieving the Diversity Mark accreditation.

IQ-EQ Belfast awarded Bronze Diversity Mark for a second year

Diversity Mark are delighted that IQ-EQ have maintained the Bronze Diversity Mark for a second year. This was awarded in recognition of our progress and commitment to Gender Diversity.

Senior HR Business Partner, Ruth Hennessey said:

We are so proud to receive the bronze award for a second year and recognise the positive impact of creating a safe and inclusive environment for our people to grow and develop. Creating a culture of inclusion, acceptance and mutual respect and celebrating differences is not only good for our employee value proposition but for our clients and business alike. I am excited to see what the next year brings with an even bigger focus on diversity, equity and inclusion across the IQ-EQ group“.

Since receiving our first Bronze Diversity Mark in 2020, IQ-EQ have established an Employee Led Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee who work in collaboration with local leadership teams to create a cluster which truly embraces and reflects the communities around us and values the diversity of thought that comes with it.

The committee recently published a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Charter and an Employee Led Network playbook setting out the IQ-EQ mission statement, our behaviour expectations and how DE&I will be monitored.

In support of this and for the first time, a DE&I survey was sent to staff to collate diversity data on people which will be pivotal in shaping the DE&I strategy going forward.

Nuala Murphy, Interim Head of Business Diversity Mark commented:

“We are delighted that IQ-EQ has maintained the Diversity Mark Accreditation for their continuous commitment to advancing Diversity in the workplace, awarded by our Independent Assessment Panel. We congratulate everyone at IQ-EQ on this achievement and we look forward to working with them as they develop their diversity initiatives over the coming years.”

Huge congratulations to all the team at IQ-EQ  on this achievement.

If you have not yet joined Diversity Mark on your company’s Diversity and Inclusion journey please reach out to emma@diversity-mark-ni.co.uk to discuss the benefits and process.

You can CLICK HERE to join Diversity Mark and work towards achieving the Diversity Mark accreditation.

Diversity Mark Third in Series of Industry Events

Diversity Mark hosted third in the series of Industry Events ‘In conversation with TLT’

TLT shared ideas and their journey towards gender inclusion to-date, as well as some of the firm’s practices and initiatives designed to promote gender equity.

Emma Lyttle, Engagement Manager welcomed all attendees to the event and we heard from TLT leaders who are making change happen. Location Lead for Belfast, Partner and active member of the gender inclusion network, Katharine Kimber, plus Partner and Women’s Equality Network Co-Lead, Siobhan Fitzgerald. TLT’s Chief People Officer, Helen Hodgkinson who spoke alongside Katharine and Siobhan sharing the firm’s work in promoting inclusivity.

TLT openly shared the below key areas:

  • Diversity Mark journey so far
  • Spotlighted their work in reproductive health
  • Flexible and part time working
  • The employee lifecycle
  • The journey to 30% and beyond
  • TLT World
  • Their vision for the future of gender inclusion in TLT.

It finished with our Interim Head of Business Nuala Murphy hosting a quick-fire Q&A session.

Thank you to everyone that attended the session. Keep your eyes peeled for our upcoming announcement of our next event.

If you have not yet joined Diversity Mark on your company’s Diversity and Inclusion journey please reach out to emma@diversity-mark-ni.co.uk to discuss the benefits and process.

You can CLICK HERE to join Diversity Mark and work towards achieving the Diversity Mark accreditation.