Diversity, equity and inclusion

Being part of a vibrant, globally diverse community, we know that tremendous value is gained from people’s differences. An inclusive and inviting culture that recognises and celebrates diversity enables people to reach their maximum potential and be their best. This is fundamental to RWS, and critical to our success. 

Research has shown that when colleagues experience a diverse, welcoming company it is a key driver of organisational outperformance. When companies invite every colleague into the innovation process, they generate more high-quality ideas, implement better and faster, beat sales targets and outperform their competition.

Given the unquestionable impact diversity, equity and inclusion has on people, the business and society at large, we place significant focus on specific pillars of activity based on the Group's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Policy.

We intersperse larger initiatives with a mosaic of other smaller activities aimed at celebrating a myriad of different human characteristics (not just obviously protected characteristics) because we are keen to build a culture where all differences are well understood, accepted and celebrated.

Three years ago Group-wide inclusion pillars were established and have since been built upon. Each pillar of activity has its own Employee Resource Group (ERG) to provide feedback into the Group diversity, equity and inclusion plans, and guide initiatives that are bespoke to their pillar. Each ERG has an Executive Team member as a sponsor and an HR leader, and a dedicated learning and development team member supporting it to ensure appropriate organisational prioritisation and influence. Health and well-being is a separate ERG with its own programme supporting all colleagues as well as the DEI initiatives.

Our ERGs are:
  • Culture 
  • Ethnicity
  • LGBTQ+ 
  • Persons with disabilities
  • Women at RWS
The purpose of these groups is to identify strategies for meeting the collective interests identified by each group, thereby driving engagement and increasing the representation, voice, contribution and influence of that group over time. 
In terms of communication and education, each group has planned slots for raising awareness and promoting more than 25 globally recognised awareness events over the course of the year on the RWS Hub, for example; Gay PRIDE, Diwali, Breast cancer awareness month, Native American Heritage month, and World Dyslexia Awareness day. Each ERG also has its own educational content channel on MyLX, our global learning platform.

In FY23 we extended our central efforts, launching the RWS Diversity Council whose purpose is to guide and support RWS in creating a diverse and inclusive organisation that closely reflects the societies in which we work. The primary role of the council is to connect the work of all the diversity and inclusion resource groups into a broader business-driven results-oriented strategy.

To bring all DEI activities together better, we also introduced the RWS Diversity Festival for the first time in May 2023. This comprised two weeks of events promoting the benefits of inclusion to the organisation and driving specific inclusion education and training to interested groups. We were pleased that more than 270 colleagues attended live events during the festival and more than 800 viewed the highlights afterwards.

We are particularly pleased with our new Language PAL programme which encourages colleagues to reach out for help and support from co-workers with good experience of the topic or skill they are developing. New language practice has been particularly popular with colleagues and this year we had 170 matches where colleagues connected with a native speaking co-worker to practice their new chosen language. This comes with the additional benefit of grass-roots cultural education and connection within the organisation which is particularly helpful given the nature of what we do as a business.

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We are also mindful of the importance of diversity at the most senior levels in the organisation including our Board and Executive Team. The Board as at 30 September 2023 was 50/50 (Female/Male) following the appointment of Julie Southern as Non-executive Director (NED) (and Chair as of October 2023) and Candida Davies as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) on 3 October 2023).
Our mix in the Executive Team as at 30 September 2023 was 36/64 (Female/Male) with the appointment of Candida Davies as CFO, and Jane Hyde as General Counsel and Company Secretary on 3 October 2022.
We remain fully committed to addressing gender diversity over time, principally through recruitment and training initiatives aimed at bringing more women into technology oriented roles and recruiting and/or internally developing more women into management and leadership roles – our recent Board and Executive Team appointments serving as good examples of our commitment to this principle.
Screenshot from ESG report showing statistics from RWS diversity of our colleagues survey. Statistics are in relation to age, gender, employee category and length of service.

Gender pay gap

We have started implementing spot checks to examine relative pay in various sample job families, and so far we are comfortable that individuals in the same job families are paid within a reasonable local range in offices around the world, with no particular adverse trend by gender. However, taking all roles into consideration we know that we do have a general pay gap between male and female employees. 

We remain fully committed to addressing this general gap over time, principally through recruitment and training initiatives aimed at bringing more women into technology-oriented roles and developing more women into management and leadership roles. 

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