New research has sought to 'diversify diversity' to expose the key diversity and inclusion considerations impacting the careers of underrepresented demographic groups in Australia and New Zealand.

The survey of more than 1,000 people by recruiting experts Hays for its FY 2018-19 Diversity & Inclusion Report shows a shortage of diverse role models, organisational cultures that do not always support diversity and inclusion, perceptions of unfair barriers to career progression, and mental health issues.

"Our findings reveal some encouraging signs of progress, but the overall picture tells us we need to accelerate the pace of change to achieve genuine workplace diversity and inclusion," says Nick Deligiannis, managing director of Hays in Australia and New Zealand.

On the positive side, 42 per cent of respondents said their line manager is female, up from 39 per cent in 2017. Yet few respondents have a line manager who is of BAME (Black, Asian and minority ethnic) heritage (6%), identifies as LGBTIQ+ (2%), is Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander (1%), Maori (1%), or who lives with a disclosed disability (1%).

This is significant when 50 per cent of survey respondents said their organisations' leaders have a bias towards people who look, think or act like them.

Meanwhile, only 46 per cent of survey respondents overall trust their organisations' leaders (senior manager level and above) to deliver change on the diversity and inclusion agenda.

Another illuminating finding was that 83 per cent of respondents living with a disclosed disability, 77 per cent of women, 67 per cent of those who identify as LGBTIQ+ and 64 per cent of mature-age people say their chances for career progression have been limited because of their disability, gender, sexual orientation or age.

Almost four in five (78%) said they were aware of mental health considerations in their current or previous workplace.

Request your free copy of the FY 2018-19 Hays Diversity & Inclusion Report here.

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