Name-blind recruitment policy set to revolutionise apprenticeship hiring

David Cameron has confirmed that names will be completely invisible on application forms for graduate jobs, with some of the biggest organisations in the public and private sector committing to reducing potential discrimination.


Teaming up to end application discrimination

The ‘name-blind pledge’ was agreed at a Downing Street roundtable event, which was led by the Prime Minister. Also at the roundtable was:

  • David Barnes, Managing Partner for Public Policy at Deloitte
  • Tanuj Kapilashrami, Head of Human Resources at HSBC
  • John Manzoni, Chief Executive Officer of the Civil Service
  • Simon Stevens, Chief Executive Officer of NHS England
  • Marianne Fallon, Partner and Head of Corporate Affairs at KPMG
  • James Purnell, BBC’s Director of Strategy and Digital

A number of public and private sector employers have signed up to the pledge, including the Civil Service, Teach First, HSBC, Deloitte, Virgin Money, KPMG, BBC, NHS and learndirect. In total, these businesses employ approximately 1.8 million people in the UK, including thousands of apprentices.


‘End discrimination and finish the fight for real equality’

Thousands of graduates in the UK have been affected by discrimination during the application process, particularly those with ethnic sounding names. According to research which was presented at the Tory party conference in early October, it was found that  people with white-sounding names are nearly twice as likely to get job call-backs than people with ethnic-sounding names.

‘‘I said in my conference speech that I want us to end discrimination and finish the fight for real equality in our country today. Today we are delivering on that commitment and extending opportunity to all,’’ declared the Prime Minister.

‘‘If you’ve got the grades, the skills and the determination this government will ensure that you can succeed.’’

John Manzoni, chief executive of the Civil Service, echoed Cameron’s views, expressing delight that young learners applying for apprenticeships won’t be affected by discrimination.

‘‘I’m delighted to expand the Civil Service’s use of name-blind applications – not just for all graduate and apprenticeship level roles, but for many other external applications too,’’ said Manzoni.

‘‘It’s vital that the Civil Service takes a lead on this, and I’m confident that this important step will help us build an organisation that is even more talented, diverse and effective than it is .’’