Cynthia V. Davis is a diversity and inclusion specialist, public speaker, Chair of a social enterprise for children and the founder and CEO of two businesses, Diversifying Group and

Cynthia (pictured above) uses Starling to manage the finances for her technology platform It recently received Recovery Loan Scheme financial support through Starling. Both of her businesses are based in London.

An inclusive approach to business

She started her recruitment business, Diversifying Group (formerly known as BAME Recruitment) in 2015, while she was on maternity leave. “I knew the challenges my daughter could face in the world: being judged on her gender, being paid less than her male counterparts, having ethnicity held against her. And I didn’t want to be somebody that sat there and did nothing about it,” says Cynthia, 45.

Diversifying Group offers clients recruitment services, advertising and diversity & inclusion training and consultancy; it employs 35 people. “Within our team, we have people from LGBTQAI+ communities,* people with disabilities, people from different nationalities and ethnicities, working parents who job-share. We lead by example.”

Cynthia V. Davis (back row, fourth from the left) and her team

In 2020, Cynthia launched “One client wanted somewhere to showcase their jobs and the initiatives they had put into action around diversity and inclusion, so they started using the Diversifying Group website. And then one client became two clients, and so on. I realised I needed to separate the two things and that’s when I created our pro-diversity job board,”

Recruiting diverse talent

“Any organisation that doesn’t take diversity seriously will lose out on great talent,” says Cynthia. “Companies have to diversify and they have to actively go to where the candidates are.”

This is where the platform comes in. Companies can create a profile, which is checked by Cynthia’s customer success team, and show evidence of how they champion diversity and inclusion, for example Women in Leadership programmes or LGBTQAI+ networks. “Companies can then list their vacancies and candidates can find out more, directly from the company’s website.” is free for individual candidates to use. Clients pay different amounts depending on how many job adverts they would like to post. So far, more than 850 companies across all sectors have chosen to become part of the platform.

Growing with Starling

Cynthia opened a Starling business account for last year. “I heard Starling’s CEO Anne Boden speak at a Women’s Event and what she talked about really resonated with me, especially her aim to make funding more accessible,” says Cynthia.

“That was one of the reasons I wanted to use Starling Bank because I felt that they understood me and some of the challenges I face as a female entrepreneur.” received Recovery Loan Scheme financial support through Starling, earlier this year. “The whole process was very easy - everything was laid out well and it wasn’t as daunting as I thought it would be. The loan team kept us informed all the way and we very much had a person helping us at the other end, not a robot. It gave us a sense of comfort knowing that we could speak to them if we had questions,” she says.

“The loan is going to go towards hiring more people and marketing initiatives - we’ve got our second TV ad lined up for later this year.” aired its first advert as part of the Channel 4 project Black to Front, which took place on 10 September 2021. For that whole day, all TV shows were led by and featured Black talent, from Channel 4 news to Gogglebox.

*LGBTQAI+ stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning (one’s sexual or gender identity), intersex, and asexual/agender.

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