ITV has published the progress it has made on on-screen and off-screen diversity as part of its Diversity Acceleration Plan.

ITV has also announced how it will build on the plan going forward, including ramping up efforts to address disability representation and socio-economic diversity as priorities in 2021/2022.

The main points of the report

●  ITV created a new role of Group Diversity and Inclusion Director on ITV’s Management Board, reporting directly to Carolyn McCall.

●  Internal analysis of ITV’s on-screen output reveals a 33% increase in terms of available lead roles filled by Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic talent year-on-year. This has resulted in 26% of lead roles being filled by Black, Asian and Minority ethnic talent, compared to 21% prior to this, demonstrating ITV’s progress in representation on-screen.

●  Through ITV’s Step Up 60 initiative, 62 opportunities were created for talent from underrepresented groups to step up to their next role – based exclusively on merit. Opportunities included Senior Producer, Director and Producer/Director on shows like Ant and Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway and The Voice UK.

●  ITV’s recruitment team redoubled efforts to broaden opportunity and reduce bias, as well as working to increase talent attraction by proactively seeking opportunities to communicate that ITV is an inclusive employer.

●  ITV recruited 42 apprentices with a high proportion from diverse backgrounds, and 11 participants to the ITV Studios Production Trainee scheme, creating more opportunity at entry level.

●  ITV launched ITV Rise, open to colleagues working towards their first line management role, from a Black, Asian or Minority Ethnic background, pairing delegates with a Senior Leadership Team advocate, who actively participated in all elements of their coaching and learning programme, and offered proactive sponsorship and shared their knowledge, experience and contacts. The programme is designed to drive meaningful culture change on race inequities by involving participants, their line managers and their senior leader advocate. Career progression of participants is one objective, but the programme is also designed to support ITV in addressing barriers to progression and driving inclusion. 26% of ITV Rise participants have already moved into more senior roles in line with their career aspirations.

●  ITV prioritised building an inclusive culture with inspirational internal events to encourage discussion, spearheaded by colleague networks, and made training available to all managers on race fluency, as well as inclusive leadership.

●  The membership of ITV’s Cultural Diversity Council – a group of independent external advisers from a range of industries who will advise, challenge and counsel ITV on all of its inclusion and diversity activities, is being finalised and will be announced shortly.

ITV said in the report: “We are encouraged by our work so far but understand we still have much to do. We are committed to continue delivering on our Diversity Acceleration Plan commitments to nurture a diverse and inclusive workforce at ITV. As we extend the Diversity Acceleration Plan going forward, we will expand our efforts to include a focus on disability and socioeconomic diversity.

“ITV is committed to continuing to work with the Creative Diversity Network on the issue of disability representation, particularly regarding off screen talent, and the company will continue its efforts to meet the Doubling Disability target of 9% off screen talent identifying as disabled, across the industry by the end of 2021. We will be accelerating change to progress disability representation and start to create long-term positive cultural change both internally and for our audiences.

“ITV will continue with its Diversity Acceleration Plan work to improve Black Asian and Minority Ethnic representation, but will expand the plan to prioritise five areas of action, which it will report on progress against in summer 2022”

1. Increasing representation of disabled people in senior editorial positions at ITV

2. Commissioning to ensure ITV better reflects the lives of disabled people on screen

3. Improving the career opportunities for disabled talent working on ITV programmes

4. Ensuring disabled people have entry level career opportunities at ITV

5. Educating ourselves about disability and disabled people’s experiences and ensuring accessibility is in-built into everything we do at ITV

Ade Rawcliffe, ITV’s Group Director of Diversity and Inclusion said: “In July 2020, ITV published its Diversity Acceleration Plan, an action-based response to accelerate change.

“We will continue to report on the five key areas we outlined, next year, and we know we need to work on attracting and providing opportunities for diverse talent at senior level at ITV, on continuing to provide strong leading roles on-screen for diverse talent, and off screen amongst production talent. We want to attract the best people to ITV so fostering an inclusive culture that welcomes all backgrounds is absolutely crucial.

“Accelerating progress in disability representation, with increased investment, clear actions and measurable outcomes is a key priority in Year 2 of our Diversity Acceleration Plan.”

Jon Creamer

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