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Russell Taylor puts focus on equal opportunity for key roles in science

Posted by Catherine Tidy on 11/02/2020
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THE positive impact of the green agenda is helping the Scientific Division team at Russell Taylor to turn the tide of equal opportunity for key roles in science.

With worldwide attention this week on International Day of Women and Girls in Science to promote gender equality in science-related fields, the business is highlighting the strides being taken to bring about change among the UK’s employers in the biotech, pharmaceutical, chemical and clinical industries.

Science Division manager Tom Hammond, leading the team at the company’s Burton Manor headquarters, said: “As advocates of environmental sustainability, placing people in positions which will have a positive green impact has become one our major strengths.

“Equally vital is our awareness of the doors to opportunity constantly being opened to a female workforce in science-related roles where there should be no gender imbalance at all - we are living an age where science is for everyone and has no restrictions.”

International Day of Women and Girls in Science this year focuses on the reality that science and gender equality are both vital for the achievement of internationally-agreed development goals for action to protect the planet.

Breaking down workplace bias and gender stereotypes to steer women into science-related fields is reflected in Russell Taylor’s own female workforce and has become an important factor within the Scientific Division to driving this agenda forward.

Here, the background and scientific knowledge of recruitment consultant Anna Khan, a graduate with a first class degree in Biomedical Science, is helping to drive the equal opportunity of recruitment to roles in the pharmaceutical, chemical and biotech/life sciences sectors as well as in contract testing, medical devices, certification and research and development.

Anna, the newest member of the Scientific Division, said: “Since joining the team, so far I have had a 1:1 ratio of placements between women and men - helping to screen candidates for their dream job without bias is one of my main goals. 

“To further our aims of placing people in positions which will have a positive green impact, we work with environmental testing sites which analyse contaminants and toxins in samples, with the overall aim to reduce current pollution levels.

“We also work with candidates who aim to reduce the emissions produced within their manufacturing or engineering projects, such as catalytic converter engineers and flue scan inspectors. These developments can greatly reduce the harmful chemicals released into the atmosphere, giving a greener, healthier living environment.”

As well as placing women in jobs in the scientific industry, Russell Taylor are also mentoring a Year 10 girl for a one-week period within the Scientific team to enable her to carry out her work experience.

Anna explained: “During her time with us, we aim to inspire her about the work of the scientific industry. This will hopefully open her eyes to the opportunities which lie ahead for her and show the capability and impact of women in science.”

Working alongside Anna in Scientific Division is recruitment consultant Hannah Williams (both pictured), a graduate with an MSc in Sports Nutrition who is using her scientific expertise – and extensive knowledge of nutritional supplements - to give an operational boost to the business in the sports nutrition market, one of the country’s fastest-growing health sectors.

Tom Hammond added: “The science background and knowledge of consultants like Hannah and Anna plays a massively important part in identifying talent - irrespective of gender - within the UK’s scientific sector where there is constant growth in areas such as environmental monitoring, climate change solutions, research and development into new products, drug testing, food production and charity research.

“Interestingly, more women are now working in STEM - Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics - but they still only make up 26 per cent of those in sector occupations. However, employers, schools and universities are increasingly working together to address the issue at school age to drive even more into the industry, ensuring they see it as a realistic and rewarding career route.”