According to the Race Disparity Audit’s Ethnicity Facts and Figures website, unemployment among BAME communities is almost double that of their white counterparts. It’s particularly bad news for black and ethnic minorities in the north of England, where the unemployment gap between BAME and white Britons is at 13.6% - compared to a 9% disparity in the south.

And for BAME individuals who manage to find employment, the challenges don’t stop there as the report also suggested that their opportunities to progress to senior management positions are ‘limited’.

Underrepresentation in senior roles

Statistics from the Ethnicity Facts and Figures website show that just 5% of black people are managers, directors or work in similar senior official roles. Further evidence that ethnic minorities are severely underrepresented at senior level comes from thinktank Green Park and Operation Black Vote, who recently found that only 4% of unitary authority leaders are of a minority background.

These figures are rather shocking when you consider that in the public sector alone, 43% of employees are estimated to be black, and a further 28% are Indian. So what can we do to help get black and ethnic minorities into senior positions?

Improving career prospects with apprenticeships

Here at GC Education and Skills, we believe everyone should have the chance to develop themselves and achieve their career goals, regardless of their ethnic background. We want to break down the barriers that BAME communities face when it comes to workplace success. With that in mind, we’d like to encourage BAME individuals who see themselves managing a team to consider our degree apprenticeship.

Our Level 6 Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship will develop the skills of both current and aspiring managers. Accredited by the University of Bolton and the Chartered Management Institute (who, coincidentally, are in the process of launching their own network for managers and leaders from all ethnic backgrounds), the chartered manager apprenticeship doesn’t require learners to already have their level 3 qualification. It’s the ideal choice for anyone who wants to build their people management and leadership skills.

We also offer foundation and top-up degrees in BA Hons Business Management, which are ideal for anyone who wants to progress into a managerial role. Learners cover a wide range of modules in the business management degree, including business law, economics and marketing. The course is intended to give students the practical skills, knowledge and real-world experience that they need to be a successful leader in any business or industry.

Why businesses should support and develop the BAME community

The Delivering Diversity report, produced by the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) highlights the need for executives and directors to do more to help BAME individuals to climb the career ladder.

It also emphasised that employers are often reluctant to invest in improving their ethnic diversity in decision-making roles – despite evidence that better diversity at all levels of a business can lead to higher revenues, a happier workplace culture and a clearer understanding of a diverse customer base.

Over to you

If you’re an employer looking for ways to improve diversity in your workplace, get in touch with our team.

Whether you want to upskill an existing BAME member of staff with apprenticeships or degrees, or if you want to offer a work placement to a young person, we can help.

Get in touch