ITV Unveils Diversity Acceleration Plan


ITV has announced a range of measures to create more opportunities for those from Black, Asian, minority ethnic and other underrepresented groups.

The British media group says it is increasing investment in this area in order to deliver “measurable change” across the organization. This includes the appointment of a group diversity and inclusion director, reporting to CEO Carolyn McCall and sitting on the ITV management board. The post will be advertised internally with an appointment expected in the next few weeks.

To increase diversity on the board and senior team, ITV will also create opportunities for new appointments in its commissioning and production departments. The group says it will increase the diversity of presenters on its “highest-profile” shows and support the careers of BAME actors to land lead roles.

The Step Up 60 initiative will provide the opportunity for at least 60 people to secure their first ITV senior editorial and production roles, including directing, writing or producing episodes.

Recruitment for up to 20 new opportunities in middle management and 40 new apprenticeships will include a positive action campaign to support under-represented candidates, advertising across a range of portals to deliver a diverse candidate base and the use of tools to reduce unconscious bias.

The plan also calls for mandatory race and inclusion training for all staff and on-screen presenters and commentators, an inclusive leadership training for all managers and a Race Forward development program to enable minority ethnic talent progression and inclusive culture change.

ITV, which will report on progress on each of these commitments every year, is also creating a Cultural Advisory Council of external advisers who will advise on the company’s inclusion and diversity activities.

CEO Carolyn McCall noted, “This moment is an important catalyst. Currently around 22 percent of those seen on ITV come from a Black, Asian and minority ethnic background. Within ITV, 12.5 percent of our people identify as having a Black, Asian or minority ethnic background. These figures reflect the commitment of people at ITV to make change.

“However, they do not paint the full picture and there’s much more work to be done to improve representation in our leadership roles as well as the presenters of our highest-profile programs, the lead actors in our dramas and behind the camera in commissioning and in key editorial roles, like writers, directors and producers.

“We have engaged with and listened to our people and there is clear commitment to accelerate change by creating more opportunities. Our plan sets out some of the actions which will create more openings for those from a Black, Asian and minority ethnic background to demonstrate their talent.

“We want a culture where everyone feels comfortable being themselves and we will listen actively to the lived experiences of colleagues so that we continue to build a fully inclusive culture. I know that everyone across ITV will put their weight and energy behind making that happen.”