Murgitroyd is committed to equality, inclusion, and creating better lives for all.
We stand with all ethnic minority communities against all forms of racism, whether overt, insidious, or structural, and we encourage our colleagues, clients, and the profession to do the same.
We recognise that racism and discrimination are faced by these communities every day, and the IP profession is not immune to this prejudice. It is not enough for us simply to condemn racism; we must be actively anti-racist.
What does anti-racism mean to Murgitroyd?
It means we will endeavour to drive education throughout the business; embrace individuality; provide equality and equity; be empathetic and committed to improve others’ well-being; provide allyship; and always strive to listen to our colleagues so that we can continually improve our equality, diversity and inclusivity practices.
So, what are we actually doing?
Our well-established IM:PACT team works to address these important issues, and we are delighted that the number of colleagues actively involved in the team continues to grow.
IM:PACT is sub-divided into a number of groups, each aimed at improving and supporting aspects of Murgitroyd life:
- Equality, Diversity and Inclusion;
- Community Outreach and Engagement;
- Charitable Giving; and
The Equality, Diversity and Inclusion group continues to develop and roll out initiatives aimed at improving diversity awareness and inclusivity within Murgitroyd.
We developed a Focus on Race programme with the assistance of an external provider, aimed at establishing a structured racial awareness training scheme. This programme is ongoing, and many of our colleagues have now received the training. We continue to run the training sessions for new colleagues joining the business, so that as many of our colleagues have an opportunity to benefit from this training as possible.
We have carried out our second focus group to hear from our colleagues who identify as members of an ethnic minority, facilitated by a third party, creating a safe space for honest, open discussion about their experiences working at Murgitroyd. The results of these focus groups are fully anonymised, and the feedback assists us in understanding where we can improve our business and adapt our working practices so as to best support all of our colleagues.
We are a Race at Work Charter signatory, committing to five practical steps in support of that Charter:
- Appointment of an Executive Sponsor for race – our Sponsor is Gordon Stark, CEO;
- Capturing ethnicity data and publicising progress;
- Committing at Board level to zero tolerance of harassment and bullying;
- Making clear that supporting equity in the workplace is the responsibility of everyone, not just leaders and managers; and
- Taking action that supports ethnic minority career progression.
Intersectionality amplifies inequality for ethnic minorities. Murgitroyd is actively involved in several projects and initiatives to improve opportunities, access, and equality across all minority groups.
Our involvement includes:
- Three of our senior colleagues (Cath Coombes, Russell Thom and Steven Suèr) are members of the CIPA and CITMA joint think tank, supported by IP Inclusive, to improve D&I across the IP profession;
- Support for the Careers in Ideas schools programme, to raise awareness of the IP profession and the wide variety of routes to working within it; and
- Laurence Cheney is Lead of IP Inclusive Scotland network, Margaret Hastie is a committee member and event coordinator, and a number of colleagues host local IP Inclusive coffee programmes, where members of the profession gather to chat over topics suggested by the IP Inclusive communities, and share best practice ideas.
We have also taken steps to revise our graduate recruitment process:
- We have moved away from CV use, to achieve consistency in applications for advertised roles and create a level playing field for applicants applying for those roles.
- Identifying information is removed from applications before they are passed to decision makers.
- We have continued on the success of our first 2021 Graduate IP Recruitment Day, holding a similar event in February 2022. We believe our open days give interested candidates an opportunity to come along and learn more about what is involved in becoming and being a Patent Attorney in an informal setting, including advice on the application and interview stages. We are in the process of extending our open day offering to other roles in the business.
Murgitroyd stands with our ethnic minority colleagues, clients, and communities against all forms of racism.
We commit to being anti-racist, and doing everything we can to bring about positive change.
We encourage constructive suggestions and feedback to assist us.
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