LONDON — PrettyGreen Group is the latest agency to secure The Blueprint diversity mark, which aims to promote racial diversity in PR and communications.

The group, a collective of communications agencies across PR, advocacy, experience, content, and social, is the first agency to achieve Blueprint status since February 2021 and the fifth to receive full status since the diversity mark launched in June 2020, joining Hope&Glory, Ketchum UK, Manifest and Stronger Stories. Agencies with Blueprint ally status, who are working towards the full mark, include Blurred, CCgroup, Harvard, Infusion, Cirkle and Cowshed.

Awarded agencies sign up to a series of commitments aimed at encouraging diversity from work experience to boardroom to staff culture to recruitment. PrettyGreen secured the mark after detailing its existing commitment to diversity, and overhauling many elements its practices, procedures and culture, driven by co-CEO Jessica Hargreaves, the board lead for diversity and inclusion.

In the last 18 months, PrettyGreen Group’s leadership team set up an internal diversity and inclusivity committee, hired an inclusivity consultant to review its organisation and deliver a training programme to all employees, and invested in a talent specialist who focuses on blind profiling, to ensure D&I bias does not negatively impact the hiring choices.

The agency also works with a diverse range of specialist partners, including SXWKS, People Like Us, and the Brixton Finishing School.

Elizabeth Bananuka, founder and CEO of Blueprinted, which awards the mark, and founder of BME PR Pros, said: “The PrettyGreen Group’s commitment to diversity and inclusion is nothing short of outstanding. From a robust recruitment and selection process to a passion for creating inclusive work and a healthy working culture, the agency has left no stone unturned and, crucially, all with considerable senior management buy-in, support and commitment.

“Their application made for a heart-warming read. It was a reminder that small agencies can make big diversity and inclusion moves. The judges and I are honoured to award The Blueprint to The PrettyGreen Group.”

Hargreaves said: “The PrettyGreen Group is thrilled to have been awarded Blueprint status as we have been dedicated to ensuring that our agency drives the highest D&I standards. Our vision is to deliver ‘Creative Less Ordinary’ and embrace diverse thinking across every aspect of the agency from recruitment, training, strategy, and creative output.

“The Blueprint has been a brilliant guide for our D&I committee to drive further change within our business operations. We encourage all agencies to use this as we have a responsibility to deliver action being in the unique position of having the ability to influence consumers through marketing communications. We will continue to evaluate our progress and take further action.”

The Blueprint diversity mark has four application rounds a year, judged by an independent panel who have taken part in a Blueprint diversity workshop. The deadline for the next round of agency applications is midday on 2 December 2021. The diversity mark will open to in-house teams from January 2022.