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Additional support and information

HS2 work with a number of external organisations and internal networks to help us ensure a diverse, supportive and inclusive workplace.

Help for applicants

Specialist resources

Vercida: Vercida is a careers site that only works with employers committed to Values, Equality, Respect, Culture, Inclusion, Diversity, Accessibility (VERCIDA).
Gap Jumpers: Blind auditioning, helping to remove bias from assessment.
Business in the Community: Helping to create a skilled, inclusive workforce today and for the future.
Officers Association (Veterans and Reservists): Employment support for Veterans.
Apprenticeships for young people: More detail on our apprenticeships and graduate programmes.

Disability-related help

Disability rights UK: Careers and work advice for disabled people.
Evenbreak: UK’s most accessible job board for disabled candidates.
Business disability forum: A not-for-profit membership organisation that makes it easier and more rewarding to do business with and employ disabled people.
Purple space: Supporting staff disability networks.
RIDI: Recruitment Industry Disability Initiative.

Additional resources

TSSA.org: Our Union
Stonewall LGBTQ+: Working with institutions to create inclusive and accepting cultures for lesbian, gay, bi and trans people.
ENEI: UK’s leading employer network covering all aspects of equality and inclusion issues in the workplace.
WISE Campaign: WISE enables and energises people in business, industry and education to increase the participation, contribution and success of women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
Women in Rail: Improving diversity in the UK rail industry through providing networking opportunities and support for all women within the sector.
Big Rail Diversity Challenge: This bespoke event, a cross between “It’s a Knockout” and “Krypton Factor”, sees gender balanced teams compete in physical and mental challenges over the course of the day.
MSDUK: Unlocking innovation through diversity.

Maria pictured in the office.
Maria: "This personal need to feel included motivates me to ensure others are included too, regardless of walks of life, culture, disability, gender or age."

Hear more from Maria

Maria

Maria was attracted to HS2 as she has experienced first-hand how London centric the economy can be.

“By creating new, faster, frequent and more reliable services, HS2 is creating jobs and opportunities across the country so that we’re a more ‘United’ Kingdom and I’m privileged to be part of this in a small way.”

Being severely to profoundly deaf Maria uses hearing aids and is passionate about inclusion. “Growing up I was expected to cope in a world designed for hearing people. This personal need to feel included motivates me to ensure others are included too, regardless of walks of life, culture, disability, gender or age.”

Maria’s email signature reminds people to use text, email or face time (Maria lip reads) instead of audio on phone calls. During conference calls Maria uses a captioning service which provides live subtitles almost immediately on her phone or laptop. As mum of 2 teenage girls the ability to work flexibly to be able to juggle school and doctors’ appointments is also important.

A personal understanding of how a deaf and disabled employee can be included in the workplace motivates Maria to share this information and help make sure HS2 is inclusive in the way we recruit, retain and assess our people. “Our Employee Networks are great for helping people feel included at work. We have a Veteran’s network, a disabled employee network, a Gender Balance and an LGBT Network as well as a new Cultural and BAME inclusion network and all of them do fantastic work.”

As part of HS2’s equality, diversity and inclusion team Maria one of her responsibilities is looking after the Reverse Mentoring project, which sees all the members of our Senior Leadership Team (66 of them) being mentored by a non-senior or junior employee. “Our CEO is reverse-mentored by one of our young apprentices! People are matched so that they work with someone who is not part of their function, often they’re from different backgrounds, genders and experiences so that they can benefit from each other’s feedback and are exposed to other ways of working. This helps our people feel more connected with each other and the business.”

Our internal employee networks

To support our employees, we have a number of supportive internal employee networks in place.

Employee networks allow those interested in various aspects of equality, diversity & inclusion to participate to the development of equality, diversity & inclusion within the organisation. The objective of these networks is to:

  • Promote activities which support the HS2 equality, diversity & inclusion policy;
  • provide feedback on consultation processes and HS2 policies;
  • encourage engagement with equality, diversity & inclusion across all functions of HS2 Ltd;
  • deliver activities aligned to the key goals of the HS2 equality, diversity & inclusion strategy; and
  • provide support to staff groups within HS2.

The gender balance network

The gender balance network is an active staff network that promotes the development of a more inclusive culture at HS2, and provides a platform of support and encouragement for men and women across the organisation. The network organises a range of events and development opportunities as well as working to improve policies and behaviours to promote the achievement of gender balance within HS2 and its supply chain.

2gether network

2gether is HS2’s Access and Inclusion Network, which provides support to staff with experience of disability, access and inclusion challenges whatever the cause, in addition to those who want to support their development. It raises awareness of disability, provides information on events, shares and promotes best practice and aims to support the achievement of HS2’s EDI objectives.

Onboard network

Onboard is our network for LGBT+ staff and their allies which supports and promotes the belief that everyone has the right to be who they want to be in our workplace. They are a highly motivated employee network who champion progress and support the organisation in creating an inclusive workplace where everyone brings the their true self to work. Onboard have developed an action plan to improve the workplace and experience of LGBT staff; additionally they celebrate Pride events, share good practice and are inclusive and welcoming of everyone to support their agenda. We aspire to be an exemplar network for HS2 employees and the companies and communities we will be working with.

Multicultural network

The newly formed Multicultural network was formed to promote and celebrate racial and cultural awareness for an organisation which operates in the most diverse cities in Europe. The Multi-Cultural Network seeks to increase engagement in diversity and awareness, celebrating a range of events from Black History Month to St Patrick’s Day; and provides role models for educational events to inspire students from ethnic minority backgrounds to reach their potential.

HS2 Veterans network

The HS2 Veterans Network is for anybody who has an interest in providing much needed support for the Armed Forces Community. This will include not only those that have served this country in one of the 3 services, but also their families and dependants. The network promotes and celebrates Veterans at HS2 in addition to assisting HS2 to meet the expectations on the armed forces covenant and explores issues and opportunities to improve our organisation including events to promote HS2 as an employer to armed forces leavers. This network will be supported by armed forces covenant signatories and associated groups.

Future talent network

The Future Talent Network will promote engaging with our future talent agenda and is for our graduates, apprentices and/or anyone else interested in how HS2 attracts, develops and retains our future talent.