HS2 have launched the new Marketplace platform with the intention to increase diversity and inclusion across its supply chain.
The HS2 Marketplace tool is designed to aid companies across its supply chain in embedding diversity and inclusion best practice throughout their business processes.
The platform has been designed and backed by the Clear Company.
Earlier this year Clear Company awarded HS2 with the Clear Assured Platinum Standard accreditation recognising HS2’s commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion.
Currently 2,300 businesses have won work on HS2 projects with thousands more expected to join with £25bn worth of contracts set to become available over the coming years.
The Marketplace platform will allow businesses to access training and resources to meet HS2’s key performance indicators in line with the Clear Assured standard.
By embedding contractual commitments for HS2 suppliers around diversity and inclusion HS2 hopes to create a more diverse workforce.
Mark Lomas, Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion at HS2 spoke on how the Marketplace platform can help diversify Britain’s rail workforce.
Mr Lomas said: “With two decades of construction work ahead of us HS2 is naturally placed to be a real driver for change.
“We’ll achieve this by ensuring that every company engaged in delivering Britain’s new railway plays their part in setting a new EDI standard.
“HS2 Marketplace enables our suppliers to be confident that their practices and processes… are truly inclusive and follow the best practice standards we expect.”
HS2’s supply chain already exceeds rail industry averages in the number of disabled, Black and Ethnically Diverse and female workers.
The Marketplace platform will look to carry on this trend by creating a more inclusive rail workforce.
Kate Headley, Director of the Clear Company said: “Once again HS2 have demonstrated ground-breaking progress and innovation with the launch of the Marketplace platform.
“This is a significant step forward in creating a truly inclusive engineering sector.
“The constructive, supportive approach will enable HS2 suppliers to improve access to long term career opportunities, for all people, right across the sector.”