West Ham United has signed up to the Football Leadership Diversity Code to further develop the club’s EDI strategy and aim to address the industry-wide shortfall of BAME/female coaches and leaders within the game.
By aligning ourselves with the Code’s recruitment targets, the club is determined to take positive action to achieve the markers of success and is committed to reviewing our recruitment processes to ensure coaches and managers from these backgrounds are given the fairest possible chance when positions arise.
We believe the Code will help to inspire both current and future generations of careers and pathways within football - outside of just playing.
And we hope that the Code gives confidence to applicants applying for roles across football, without any fears of discrimination or prejudice within the participating clubs’ recruitment processes.
The club will also continue to ensure that apprenticeships and entry-level roles are also accessible to under-represented groups and will work with local employability charities and organisations to guarantee full visibility of these roles.
Furthermore, we will continue to develop existing staff, in line with the Code’s principles, by providing opportunities of progression and learning within the club to expand on the diversity of our leadership team - currently 50 per cent of the Vice-Chairman’s direct reports are female.
By signing up, we want to enhance our off-pitch commitment to other protected characteristics and consideration of intersectionality by liaising with other EDI organisations, advocates and regulatory bodies to ensure that we are constantly comparing against best practices and promoting authentic community engagement.
Furthermore, with the reporting of recruitment statistics, we believe that clubs will be able to work collaboratively to address industry wide trends and find positive solutions to improve the diversity across football as a whole.
We are always evolving our EDI strategy based on feedback from internal and external stakeholders, including the recently launched Staff EDI Forum and supporter groups such as BAME Hammers, Disabled Supporters’ Board, Pride of Irons and both the Women and Fan Equality Forums.
The club engages in a number of EDI initiatives and also seek to educate the community about EDI with the launch of the ‘Stop the Hate’ programme and utilising strong relationships with Stonewall, Kick it Out and Women in Football to inform supporters and local residents of their responsibilities in recognising and reporting any kind of discrimination.
Find more information on how to sign up to the Football Leadership Diversity Code, and further detail on its principles, pledges and definitions.