Inclusive recruitment practices

As part of our Koreo's work, over the last 15 years, we have designed and delivered a range of national programmes dedicated to expanding access to social impact careers, with a specialised focus on the non-profit sector.  The shared purpose of all of Koreo’s recruitment practices, irrespective of the work, is to mobilise talent around the mission.  This practice has been developed with an ambition to place equality, diversity and inclusion at the heart of our approach.

One such example of this work includes Charityworks, the ILM-recognised UK non-profit sector’s graduate scheme and frequent Times Top 100 and UK300 award-winning graduate employer that has supported almost 1500 exceptionally talented early careers entrants to access careers and professional development in the sector across the country each year. Another, 2027 is a 10-year programme dedicated to diversifying grant making by bringing more working-class perspectives into philanthropic roles.  Change100 was an internship programme, co-developed with Leonard Cheshire Disability dedicated to changing the employment landscape for disabled students supporting over 1000 people with disabilities and long-term health conditions to access meaningful employment opportunities with some of the UK’s biggest employers.  Whilst through the government-funded Kickstart scheme, we supported the creation and fulfilment of 300 jobs for young people at risk of long-term unemployment.  

We’ve seen some extraordinary outcomes as a result of our approach to this work.  For example, Charityworks had a significant diversity challenge so common to lots of graduate schemes and reflective of a sector that reported just 5% of senior leadership teams in the sector from a Black, Asian or Minority Ethnic (BAME) group. It was stubbornly white and middle-class. Yet within just 5 years we’ve rapidly shifted the diversity profile of our talent pool from one that was 7% BAME in 2018 and is now 42% BAME today, providing the opportunity for the sector to collectively power up and accelerate the development of the next generation of diverse talent. Meanwhile on 2027, in working to position an offer based on social class, we’ve seen cross-cutting intersectionality across a range of characteristics including age, race and gender.

Within just 5 years we’ve rapidly shifted the diversity profile of our talent pool from one that was 7% BAME in 2018 and is now 42% BAME today

Whilst we’ve generated a lot of learning about hiring and retaining diverse talent and creating inclusive recruitment practices we also recognise there’s a tremendous wealth of knowledge and experience coming from across all the diverse organisations that partner with us, and so we are keen to build a collaborative network that shares a wider ambition to make our organisations and sector far more radically inclusive.  We’re especially eager to support organisations in their commitment to collectively power up and accelerate the development of talented people who bring a wider range of lived experience to the sector including and in particular people from working-class or wider socio-economic backgrounds.

We want to kick off this conversation by sharing some of our thinking and practice and warmly invite you to share your thoughts, practice and provocations with us.  We’d be pleased to pick up the conversation with you directly, so should you wish to comment directly or want further information please feel free to email

Craig Pemblington, Head of Business Development


You can download a copy of the full report, Inclusive Recruitment Practices here where you can also access the recent webinar recording and deck.