Working Lunch Cover Optimised

4 NOV 2021 & 1 FEB 2022

Tech Talent Charter - Growing Inclusion & Diversity in South West Digital Sector

Kick start your inclusion & diversity strategy to address your tech skills shortages

Date and Time:

Session 1 - 12.30 - 14.30 on 4th November 2021
Session 2 - 12.00 - 13.30 on 1st February 2022


Sponsored by:

Heart of the south west LEP

[EVENT CANCELLED] Growing Inclusion & Diversity in the South West Digital Sector - 4th Nov & 1st Feb 2022

The Heart of the South-West Local Enterprise Partnership has joined forces with the Tech Talent Charter (TTC) to bring to you the ‘Growing Inclusion & Diversity in the South West Digital Sector’ two-part series. Offered to employers of talent in digital and technical roles in Somerset, Devon, Plymouth and Torbay for free, this series will be delivered over 2 lunchtime sessions. These sessions are for businesses that recognise the business case for inclusion and aim to build and then progress their inclusion and diversity (I&D) strategy in 2022.

The first session will take place virtually on 4 November 2021 from 12.30 - 14.30 and the second session will take place virtually on 1st February 2022 from 12.00 - 13.30.

Why register your interest to participate?

We know that two of the biggest business challenges facing most businesses are skills shortages and hiring talent. Skills shortages are becoming more urgent every day. To address this challenge requires a new way of thinking about finding, keeping and developing talent. It requires inclusion.

Businesses need to identify new sources of talent fast. Most hiring managers, especially those in tech, have been fishing from the same small pond for talent. It’s time to access the talent traditionally underrepresented in tech, such as women and other underrepresented groups who have largely been excluded from the industry to-date. To access this diverse talent (and retain it) businesses must become more inclusive.

Some people think this can only be done in big businesses with large HR teams or in companies that have someone with specific responsibility for Inclusion and Diversity, with a big budget and time to make things happen. We know this is not the case. The TTC has worked with hundreds of small and medium-sized businesses over the last few years that have driven forward change. We know there are small, practical steps you can take to really move the dial and get great, diverse people in the door and to retain them to build more innovative teams and move your business forward.

If you get the ‘why’, but your company would like help with the 'how' then sign up to join these two sessions.

Further information

This 2 part series will be delivered virtually in short sessions over lunch time on 4th November and 1st February. The sessions will be linked so, to make the most of it all, participants must commit to attend both sessions.

Session 1 agenda (4th November 12.30 - 14.30):

  1. An introduction to the Tech Talent Charter and how you can use it to drive your company’s I&D Strategy (20 mins)
  2. A panel session with people from SMEs about the practical steps they have taken to begin their inclusion and diversity journey sharing what has worked best and the obstacles they had to overcome (45 mins)
  3. Small group sessions during which participants will work together guided by a facilitator to devise the start of an action plan for within their own organisation (45 mins)
  4. Wrap up and next steps

Session 2 agenda (1st February 12.00 - 13.30):

  1. A review of actions participants told us they are using to drive greater diversity, equity and inclusion (20 mins) [participants will be sent a link to provide this information ahead of joining this session - you can provide this information on an anonymous basis]
  2. A deeper dive with a panel of people who will provide information about the action plans within their company and the practical steps their organisation have taken to drive their inclusion and diversity journey. They'll cover what has worked, what hasn't and the obstacles they have had to overcome (60 mins)
  3. Wrap up and next steps

All sessions will be run on a Chatham House Rule basis. Honesty is key. Coming to the session and not having all the answers is welcomed. We are all up for the tough conversations and finding positive practical ways forward.

This is a free series however we are requesting that organisations commit to having a representative at both sessions. Your organisation will be promoted on LinkedIn as a company working to drive greater inclusion and diversity in tech and included in related press releases.

At the end of this 2 part series participants will:

  1. Know where to find information that will help you to respond to challenge on the business case for inclusion and diversity from different stakeholders;
  2. Know how to navigate the Tech Talent Charter’s Open Playbook to find information and ideas about 'what works' and practical resources to adapt and make use of within your own organisation
  3. Have met colleagues in the South West region who are on a similar journey.

This series is for you if:

  • You have responsibility for driving inclusion and diversity in a business based in the South West; 
  • You are a director or manager in a South West based business;
  • Your role is in HR (within a South West based business) and you are keen to do more on inclusion and diversity;
  • You are a champion of inclusion and diversity in your company.
If your company isn't already signed up as a TTC Signatory, sign up today and join over 680 leading UK employers of tech. Becoming a Signatory is free.

Sponsored by: Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership, driven forward by the LEP’s Digital Skills Partnership.

Host: Tech Talent Charter


Debbie Forster

Debbie Forster MBE, CEO at Tech Talent Charter

Polly Jacob

Polly Jacob, Engagement, Diversity & Inclusion Executive at Softcat plc

Anushka Davies

Anushka Davies, Head of Talent, Engagement & Diversity at Softcat plc

Dania Lyons 2021

Dania Lyons, Talent & Capability Lead at Toyota Connected Europe

Emma McDonagh
Emma McDonagh - Chief Technical Officer at Numatic International


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Register for the second session here...

Are you a subject matter expert in inclusion and diversity?

Click here to register your interest for future hackathons and working lunches that match your areas of expertise and interest.

Interested in attending more Inclusion and Diversity events?

The Tech Talent Charter hosts various events including Hackathons, Drop-in Sessions, and Working Lunches.