IAPI launched its new Diversity & Inclusion Policy at a special launch this week that featured Ali Hanan, the founder of Creative Equals.
The aim of IAPI’s Diversity & Inclusion Policy is to ensure that the industry is representative of all sections of society and all employees, job applicants, clients and suppliers are respected, valued and given equal and fair opportunity to perform at their best.
“This policy document is a powerful piece of work that has been developed and shaped by our DEI Council. Its packed full of insight and recommendations and will help crystallise the type of industry we want to create and the steps we can take to get there,” says Shenda Loughnane, president, IAPI and Group Managing Director, dentsu.
According to Stha Banks, head of paid social, Core & D&I Council Lead on the IAPI Board: “I am very excited for the D&I Council to be launching the IAPI Diversity and Inclusion Policy within our industry. It’s a very much needed document for our agency members most of whom have been asking about it. The policy offers a range of guidelines on how we can all navigate the journey of diversity, equality, inclusion and belonging to create even more enticing work environments that we can all thrive in. The hope now is that we start focusing on clear goals and actions within our own individual organisations and diversify our talent. There are six key areas that we focused on but these guidelines should evolve too. So, we look forward to feedback.”
“The Launch of the D&I policy guidelines is a starting point, as a collective our aim is to create an environment where people are encouraged to bring a different point of view to the table,” says Amar Jacob, account director, In the Company of Huskies.
“Allowing us to integrate wider perspectives into our work, from the beginnings of our thoughts to the core of our problem solving, with a permanent aim to enshrine it in all of our work. As a group of agencies that influence the comms of Ireland, we have an opportunity with our platform to inform and educate society on inclusivity and drive systemic change,” he adds.
As part of the launch of IAPI’s D&I policy, attendees also heard from Ali Hanan who cited some interesting statistics about the makers of creative work and the receivers of that same work.
Referencing UK statistics, Hanan said that women make 61% of all purchasing decisions, 1 in 6 Gen Z-ers identify as Queer, 7% were born with a disability while 20% gain one by the age of 50 and 41% of over 65s are also likely to have a disability.
However, just 17% of creative directors in advertising were female while 2% are classified as “older women.”
In addition, 1% are disabled, 1.5% identify as LGBTQIA+ while just 6% are over the age of 55.
“If you’re not in the team, you’re not seen in the work,” said Hanan. “If you’re not sitting around the table while the work is being shaped then there is no representation. There must be a real connection between who is present when decisions are made and who is in the work. It is a commercial imperative as well as a moral one. Who makes the work, shapes the work,” she added.