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Bolstering our Employer Advisory Group: Bringing the employer voice to the SMC

Our Employer Advisory Group (EAG) came together this week for the first time in person since forming in October 2022, when they met to consider the Commission’s next steps in supporting employers to build socio-economic inclusion in their workforce.

The rich discussions centred around the challenges they face as employers to address social mobility alongside how the group could influence change at an Industry level.   

There was a recognition that many businesses had not yet considered socio-economic inclusion as part of their diversity and inclusion strategy, and that engagement with those Business Leaders is vital if we are going to significantly change or impact employer behaviours.  

They discussed the need to focus on skill formation in all stages of life to ensure individuals are not left out of the labour market, and the need for employers to recruit for skills.  They noted the importance of good career guidance in schools from an early age to showcase the multitude of jobs and careers available for young people to enter the workforce.  

They expressed the importance for employers to collect this diversity data to understand their workforce, and the experiences of the employee through the employee lifecycle, recognising the difficulty employers face in collecting that data and considering how we can demystify that process.  

We look forward to working together with the EAG to take action on these topics.  

Commissioner sponsor of the EAG

At the helm of the EAG is our Commissioner Parminder Kohli, a distinguished leader whose extensive career spans 26 years, seven industries, three continents, and four organisations. Currently serving as the Senior Vice President of Europe, Middle East & Africa for Shell Lubricants, Parminder’s leadership is further enriched by his philanthropic work, including his role as a Non-Executive Director for the Success for All Educational Trust.

Parminder says “This is an engaged group of employers from across the UK

I have been heartened to hear the activities they are already doing both within their organisation but also across their industries.  It’s clear that they are dedicated to leveraging strategic influence, fostering collaborative learning, and utilising their collective networks to address social mobility challenges innovatively and effectively.

Their experience and passion to support others to deliver change will help us take forward a wide range of initiatives to provide guidance to other employers.”

EAG Members

Alongside those already appointed, the EAG welcomes new members Carol Sommerville, Compass Group UK & Ireland’s Chief People Officer and Craig Beaumont, Chief of policy and media affairs at the Federation of Small Businesses, each bringing their unique expertise and perspectives to the group. 

About the EAG

The Social Mobility Commission unveiled the Employer Advisory Group (EAG) in October 2022.  You can read more about it here.