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Diversity initiatives

Diversity initiatives

Embracing a range of nationalities, cultures and perspectives

A brief snapshot of some of the initiatives that help BAT stand out from the rest.

B United – our LGBT+ network

B United is a self-governed global community of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and trans (LGBT+) employees, and their allies, working across the BAT world.

The community strives to develop and nurture an even more inclusive and welcoming culture for all LGBT+ employees. This means fostering an environment in which all employees are comfortable being themselves and can realise their full potential at work.

B United provides emotional support for its worldwide network by offering mentoring and support and providing a safe forum to share experiences. On a practical level the network provides advice to the business around international assignments, as well as offering help to line managers who may have queries around sensitive matters concerning LGBT+ employees.

You can read more about B United in our stories and features section, as well as an interview with one of the community's members, Jay

Proud to B United

BAT’s LGBT+ employee network – B United – strives to develop and nurture an even more inclusive and welcoming culture for all LGBT+ employees.

Women in BAT (WiB) Network

Women in BAT Logo

Women in BAT (WiB) is an employee-led network passionate about diversity and championing gender equality for women supporting them to reach their full potential and building A Better Tomorrow™. WiB, established in 2017, has been created to provide a supportive community where women and allies can connect, share experiences, find mentorship opportunities and challenge the status quo to improve diversity and inclusion within the business. We have seen that this has helped create a sense of belonging and empowerment for women within our organisation leading to incremental changes within BAT.

Its members volunteer time and energy in numerous ways to support the WiB community, with particular focus on the following pillars: Networking & Professional Development, Awareness & Empowerment, Allyship, External Engagements and Global Women’s Network.

WiB continues to drive awareness and encourages active participation in fostering gender equality.  Promoting a more inclusive workplace and culture will truly deliver on our “A Better Tomorrow” purpose.

Women in STEM

Our Women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) initiative uses external partnerships and internal learning and development platforms, aiming to attract, develop and retain more women across our Research & Development, Operations and Digital & Business Solutions  functions.

In the UK, we have joined WISE , an organisation that enables people in business, industry and education to increase the participation, contribution and success of women in STEM roles by organising knowledge-sharing and networking events, training and webinars. We are official signatories to its 10-step framework, which provides evidence-based action, knowledge, and tools for achieving gender balance in the STEM workforce. These types of partnerships, which we are looking to implement in key hubs across the business, will also provide female employees with the opportunity to widen their network and interact with peers from other companies.

Read more about our Women in STEM initiative.

Celebrating our female scientists

We marked International Day of Women and Girls in Science 2021 by celebrating the achievements of our female scientists and shining a spotlight on their world-class research. Our pioneering women were also showcased in a national Women in STEM campaign in 2020.

Our video below shines a light on some of our brilliant women scientists.

Celebrating our women in Science

A focus on some of the brilliant women who are helping to accelerate our A Better Tomorrow™ transformation.


Our Parents@BAT programme continues to provide a range of benefits to support new parents. It offers minimum requirements for fully paid leave for new mothers and adoptive parents, and a return-to-work guarantee, exceeding legal requirements in many countries. It also includes flexible working opportunities and an online advice service offering coaching support for all parents whenever they need it.

In 2022, we offered enhanced support including hybrid working, wellbeing, D&I, caregiving, parenting older children, and more. Parents@BAT also includes ‘Ask a Coach’ which provides access to executive coaches, 24 hours a day. We have also launched a confidential assisted fertility support to our UK employees via Apricity, our partner to our private medical plans. In 2022, the return rate from parental leave was 97% for women and 99% for men.

IGNITE returners programme

Our IGNITE returners programme focuses on supporting experienced professionals returning to the workplace after a career break. It includes flexible working, training and coaching for returners, and training for line managers.

Following a successful launch of our global IGNITE returners programme in nine markets (UK, Australia, Turkey, Trinidad & Tobago, Argentina, Colombia, Poland, Mexico, and Pakistan), we continue to recruit returners across the world.

Women in Leadership

Our Women in Leadership programme is one of the ways we support women’s progression into senior roles. The programme offers training, mentoring and other types of career support for high potential female employees around the Group.

Its purpose is to accelerate the performance and potential of female talent through:

  • Enhancing leadership behaviours to support career progression
  • Unlocking full potential earlier in careers
  • Strengthening networking

In 2022, we expanded the scope and launched new WIL programmes for women in the junior management level and have grown the coverage to approximately 1,000 women managers.

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A Better Tomorrow

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