New partnership sees Diversity project step up strategic approach

New partnership sees Diversity project step up strategic approach

Friday, May 18, 2018 Posted by Joseph Streeter
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The initiative announced two new partnerships this week

The All-In Diversity Project has unveiled its latest strategic partnership with The National Council of Problem Gambling (NCPG) in the United States.

It was part of a week of momentum for the initiative, after it also announced that casino games developer, Red Tiger Gaming became a founding member as part of its drive to improve practices in gambling.

It comes as the topic of diversity and inclusion remains one that is front and centre today, both in this and other industries as well as garnering media attention. Several studies have shown that a diverse workforce can be a key factor in improving a businesses bottom line and overall product delivery.

When asked why the NCPG partnership is especially important for the All-in Diversity project, Kelly Kehn, co-founder of the initiative told "This partnership takes the conversation about the need for diversity in general and moves it to a whole new level of social action and progress. It clearly underlines our belief that working on improving diversity and inclusion internally within our businesses can have a direct external effect on how we care for our customers.

“It also underlines the two are intrinsically linked in the need for change to be company-wide as well as industry-wide. Throwing money at a one-off diversity or RG initiative simply doesn't work. Rather, creating a company that is diverse and inclusive where employees are encouraged take care of their customers is sustainable and makes a lot more sense.”  

Fellow co-founder, Christina Thakor-Rankin echoed the importance of this deal: “From my experiences as a practising compliance Officer and MLRO, as well as being a life-long advocate of responsibility and harm minimisation, we need internal teams who can relate to our customers on every level: gender, age, geography, culture and so on more than ever before.

“Migration and the internet mean that we live in a blended world which no longer supports the stereotypes of old - today’s players come in all shapes, sizes and colours and display a variety of cultural (rather than gender or racial) behaviours and attitudes to betting and gambling.

“If we as an industry are to support and protect them as we should, we need internal teams who are representative of, and so can identify with our customers on every level, and ensure that markers of harm and support systems cover the entire cultural spectrum of players and not just those we can relate to.”

Detailing what the future steps of progression are for the All-in Diversity project, Kehn added: “At the moment, we are heads down with our data collection and analysis. Our global survey, All-Index, is our lead initiative as we believe that creating transparency and painting a true picture of where we are today will be the first real total industry step towards progress. We must first set the baseline and then we can benchmark progress in the areas of recruitment, retention, employee policy and corporate governance.

“We will then assemble our founding members in the latter part of this year to start to set best practices for how we progress. However, we first need the data as it will be the catalyst for everything we do. We are planning a few workshops and events in local markets focused on action and training of our employees. And finally, I'll say that we have a few more Founding Members and partners to announce in the near future, all of whom are making their mark to better this industry in their own unique way. It's an exciting time to be in gaming, I'd say.”

Thakor-Rankin also mapped the current state of play for increasing diversity in the industry: “The problem we have had for a long time is that we know things are not right. Whether that be the use of promotions girls (or boys) at ICE, the challenge of engaging the millennials, or cross-selling of products on the basis of gender. Whilst many will be happy to offer an opinion as to why this is, the reality is we really don’t know for sure - it could be a lack of women at the top, and if so why - traditional patriarchal attitudes or not enough coming through the ranks due to a drop-off. Until we start to separate the fact from the perceived fiction we will never really know and until we know how can we possibly set about fixing it.

“To that end I would urge everybody in the sector to take part in the All-Index. There is no naming and shaming and scores remain anonymised – organisations have nothing to lose by taking part, and everything to gain as the results will allow us to build a better more inclusive industry that can only benefit all.”

Totally Gaming says: For the All-in Diversity project partnering with the NCPG can allow the issue of diversification to be extended to problem gambling. Moving forward, As Kehn emphasises in the piece it’s vital now that the data being collected is maximised to set a realistic benchmark for diversity in the industry.   

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