RSL and Matchtech together form the second largest UK rail recruiter, supporting HS2, Crossrail, TfL, Network Rail, and all tiered suppliers to the rail industry. 50% of our group’s top 100 clients support the rail market and we supply 80% of Network Rail’s largest suppliers, down to SMEs. We support clients providing wider services to the rail ecosystem, including communications, signalling, planning, networks, facilities and business support. RSL places ~9,000 and Matchtech makes ~300 rail placements per year.
We are supporting The Big Rail Diversity Challenge to demonstrate our commitment to making the rail industry a more inclusive and representative environment, thus better reflecting the make-up of the industry’s customer base. We truly connect with The Big Rail Diversity Challenge’s message that gender diversity is better for people, better for business and better for rail. RSL and Matchtech are highly motivated to be part of this change; spearheading a move towards greater gender diversity across all of our operations.
As an organisation dedicated to connecting quality talent with top employers, we understand the value a diverse workforce brings to every workplace and the part we play in this as a recruitment provider. Furthermore, as a supplier dedicated to the UK rail & recruitment market space, we understand the extent of this industry’s diversity challenges and know there is much more work to be done to promote equal opportunities, diversity and inclusion. We are excited to connect with companies across our industry as part of The Big Rail Diversity Challenge, to share best practice, learn from our peers to inform our own processes and ultimately make rail a more gender diverse industry.
Resourcing Solutions and Matchtech: Diversity in our Workplace
As an organisation we promote diversity through:
– Our internal Diversity & Inclusion group which is a hub for sharing diversity and inclusion best practice, pioneering specific actions across the group and sharing suggestions on organisational and operational improvements & aims.
– Memberships with organisations such as Women into Construction, the Women in Aviation and Aerospace Charter and the Armed Forces Covenant, where we attend events to gain invaluable knowledge and access to a more diverse pool of candidates. We are a Disability Confident Employer and silver-standard member of EcoVadis, an accreditation in CSR, with a rating in the 89th percentile of companies in our industry.
– Ensuring employees and candidates are placed for their skill, ability and ethos. It is our strict policy to shortlist candidates based on the most suitable match for the client, rather than their gender, sexual orientation, marital status, age, disability, race, colour, religion, ethnic or national origin, membership or non-membership to a trade union, working hours or whether on a fixed term or permanent contract.
– Carrying out training on interview best-practice and job writing techniques with all consultants, with the focus on attracting candidates for their skill, ability and ethos. Our consultants also receive training on the Employment Agencies Act (EAA) regulations, Immigration Asylum and Nationality Act 2006 and Gattaca policies which include dedicated text on equal opportunities and diversity.
– Our commitment to the Recruitment and Employment Confederation’s Diversity Pledge. Our Wellbeing team has 23 voluntary Diversity Champions across our group, who celebrate and promote discussion of diversity and inclusion within our business and with our clients through events, industry insight, articles and employee forums.
– Providing webinars to our client-base on diversity & inclusion. This has included the following webinars: Why neurodiversity in engineering and tech is a hidden competitive advantage and LGBTQ+ diversity in STEM: How can businesses do more?
– Company-wide training on diversity, including sessions delivered by industry thought leaders such as Hayley Barnard at MIX Diversity Developers.
We have provided examples of how we have supported our clients with diversity & inclusion aims and initiatives below:
– We are working with National Skills Solutions to support newly trained apprentices with getting into work. After completing rail engineering qualifications, we help find them their first placement. National Skills Solutions trains people from a diverse range of backgrounds including the ex-armed forces, unemployed, ex-offenders and those looking for a career change. We recently took on six apprentices who had completed their Level 2 Rail Engineering qualification, placing them across our client-base to carry out track renewals, sleeper changes and cable pulling. Following six months of mentoring, we were able to sign off all learner support criteria, allowing them to move on to a white hat.
– We are a signatory to the Armed Forces Covenant with aims to work towards becoming an officially recognised ‘Forces-friendly employer’. We regularly work with the Careers Transition Programme and have supported clients including DE&S in developing Career Transition Programmes for wounded veterans.
– We have worked with clients such as the DE&S to redesign their diversity monitoring processes. In the last year, we have helped DE&S increase ethnic minority applications by 7.3%, female applications by 8% and LGBTQ+ applications by 2%. We are currently delivering an innovative campaign to specifically attract and engage autistic candidates through a differentiated, inclusive and accessible recruitment process. This includes video interviewing, mentoring throughout the process, ‘autism-friendly’ tours, tailored assessment techniques and ‘autism aware’ training for all interviewers.
– We have also worked closely with Eurovia on Project Recce, promoting veterans back into work and changing the perception of them in the working environment. We have introduced this project to eight veteran candidates so far.
– In the last year, we have helped a leading STEM-skills employer improve female new starter intake from 19% to 28%.
– We partner with several clients to celebrate Women’s Engineering Day and organised a ‘bring your daughter to work’ day with one of our key customers, to promote aspirations for engineering careers amongst young people. We have provided an article from this event here and an image from the event below.
– Our STEM Ambassadors promote STEM careers to young people across the UK. We attend the UK’s Big Bang Fair to inspire young people to develop careers within STEM.
– To invest in tomorrow’s workforce in STEM skills, we gave our employees’ children STEM toys as Christmas presents in 2020, asking them to provide their reviews on how inspiring, engaging and impactful they were. We compiled a ‘STEM toys playbook’, available online for free, to help our clients, partners and candidates to choose great STEM gifts for the next generation. To promote it, we held a competition to give free STEM toys away to school and nursery classes across the UK. Our STEM playbook can be found here and shown below.