How Acas advances equality and fosters good relations
Our Research Activities
We act as a centre of excellence for good relations in workplaces. We undertake research and evaluation into our services and wider workplace issues and when we do our qualified researchers always ensure that equality is a key component of their considerations
Reports of the findings from this evaluation programme and wider research are available at www.acas.org.uk/researchpapers.
A standard element of the evaluation of all those services in which people participate in their own right (rather than as representatives of an organisation) is an assessment of the demographic profile of service users. In addition, when analysing the experiences of our customers, results are examined for any evidence of different experiences of service use by their protected characteristics. Recent research papers including analysis of this kind are:
- The Dispute Resolution Regulations two years on: the Acas experience [467kb] Ref: 07/11 Barbara Davey and Gill Dix (Acas Research and Evaluation Section)
- Service user perceptions of Acas’ conciliation in Employment Tribunal cases 2010 [1Mb] Ref: 02/11 Acas Research and Evaluation Section and Infogroup/ORC International
- Evaluation of the first year of Acas' Pre-Claim Conciliation service [569kb] Ref: 08/10 Acas Research and Evaluation Section & Infogroup/ORC International
- Acas Helpline evaluation 2009 [1Mb] Ref: 03/10: Alex Thornton and Nic Fitzgerald (TNS-BMRB)
- Acas Mediation 2010/11: Responses from participants and commissioners [217kb] Ref: 12/11 Acas Research and Evaluation Section
From time to time - for example when customer survey results indicate that there may be an issue which should be explored in more detail, or when a policy change seems set to impact on particular groups of service-user - we conduct research aimed specifically at unpicking how our services are experienced by these groups and how they might be improved. Examples include:
- Race discrimination claims: Unrepresented claimants' and employers' views on Acas' conciliation in employment tribunal cases [581kb] (Ref: 04/07) Maria Hudson, Helen Barnes, Sheere Brooks and Rebecca Taylor (Policy Studies Institute)
The Experiences of Sexual Orientation and Religion or Belief Discrimination Employment Tribunal Claimants [851kb] (Ref: 02/07) Author: Ann Denvir, Andrea Broughton, Jonny Gifford and Darcy Hill (IES)
- Sexual orientation and religion or belief discrimination in the workplace [597kb] (Ref: 01/07) Author: Ben Savage (Acas Research and Evaluation Section)
In addition to its evaluation programme, Acas also undertakes wider research on employment relations policy issues, designed to inform both the development of Acas services and wider debate. One strand of this research has been increasing understanding of the needs of employees with protected characteristics and/or on informing guidance to employers on appropriate workplace policy and practice. For example:
- Management handling of sexual orientation, religion and belief in the workplace [561kb] (Ref: 01/09) Sarah Dickens, Martin Mitchell and Chris Creegan (NatCen) (Ref: 04/06): Fiona Neathey (Acas Research and Evaluation Section)
- The Experience of Ethnic Minority Workers in the Hotel and Catering Industry: Routes to Support and Advice on Workplace Problems [349kb] (Ref: 03/06) Tessa Wright and Anna Pollert (Working Lives Research Institute, London Metropolitan University)
- Gender differences in enforcing employment rights [529kb] (Ref: 07/05): Margaret Fox
- Pregnancy at Work: Research to explore experiences of employers in small firms [198kb] (Ref 07/04): Cragg Ross Dawson
Our Training Activities
We advance equality and foster good relations through our Advisers by providing training around equality and diversity covering the law in the Equality Act 2010 and how good practice can ensure compliance in the workplace. We provide training to employees either in house or to groups of employees in good practice to avoid discrimination and respect diversity. We provide training on Bullying and Harassment.
Our Guidance Publications
Acas furthers equality and good relations through its range of equality advice and publications.