To ask Her Majesty's Government following the recent report by the Sector Skills Council Energy and Utility Skills Diversity in the Energy and Utility Sector, what steps they are taking to identify incentives and barriers to the recruitment and retention of a more diverse workforce. [HL4341]
The Government recognise that improving diversity is a key strategic objective for employers, who are driving this through the sector skills councils and their skills academies. Progress so far has been mixed, with professional roles, such as engineers, having an increasing diversity in both gender and ethnicity, which is beginning to be reflected in more senior posts. Apprenticeships, however, are still male dominated.
Sector attractiveness strategies are being developed to overcome the negative impressions that many young people have about working in the energy industries and to improve the number of applicants. These will provide the key mechanism by which the industry will sell itself to potential applicants and increase the diversity of the applicant pool.