Claire Boussagol, former president of APCO’s Europe region, co-authored this post.
The UN International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination observed worldwide is Sunday, March 19. As we consider the year behind us, and all that it entailed, Claire Boussagol, president of APCO’s Europe region and Kelly Williamson, president of APCO’s North America region share their thoughts on the events of the past year, and how APCO is working to ensure an inclusive and accessible work environment for all its employees.
As a company dedicated to ensuring diversity and inclusivity across its workforce, we’re continuing our commitment to make APCO accessible to all. For example, in Europe, as of October last year, we’re now using a STAR-based interview process, where each candidate applying for the same position is asked one set of questions. This is designed to give all entrants an equal opportunity to showcase their experience, and remove potential bias from the selection process. To ensure candidates’ total anonymity, they were each assigned a number and so all personal information, such as background, remained unknown. Due to the pilot’s success, we’re incredibly excited to have announced the roll-out of this hiring process for all our entry-level roles, to begin in June.
We also take the education of our staff on this extremely seriously, which is why we’re running training and advocacy sessions for all our colleagues. These focus on topics such as anti-racism and intersectionality, along with the LGBTQI community and transgender inclusivity. Alongside these initiatives, we’ve launched online – and will soon be launching in-person – unconscious bias training sessions, which seek to help colleagues understand their own biases, and will focus on understanding micro aggressions and fostering an inclusive leadership team.