The U.K. Investment Association has teamed up with the Diversity Project, a non-profit organization that works with firms in the investment and savings industry to help money managers increase the number of black employees on staff.
To outline steps that money management firms could take to support black employees at their organizations, the association, which represents firms with £7.7 trillion ($9.8 trillion) in assets under management, published "Black Voices: Building black representation in investment management" last month.
The report's recommendations call for money management firms to offer a more inclusive work culture to black employees.
The report is based on responses from 20 black professionals currently working in investment management across a variety of roles and 30 young black people aged from 16 to 24 hosted by the association at two roundtables in December 2018.
IA in March and April also surveyed 173 black and multiracial professionals already employed by money management firms. Some 40% of surveyed black professionals said their firms did not have policies in place to support the recruitment and progression of black employees.
Black investment managers, who constitute less than 1% of total U.K. money management workforce, suggested firms could also improve employee networks to help their employees find relatable role models within their organizations to support their career progression, according to a news release about the report.
"Different voices, opinions and experiences help investment performance, widening horizons and discouraging group think. And we need to be connected with all our clients. Just as our customers come from all ethnic backgrounds, so should our people," Chris Cummings, CEO of the Investment Association, said in the news release.