Diversity is an afterthought in financial services sector

Diversity is an afterthought in financial services sector

70 per cent of staff believe that diversity, equity and inclusion are an afterthought in the financial services industry, according to new research.

As a result, two thirds also claimed that financial services institutions currently don’t do enough with their diversity policies.

The findings were revealed by a poll of decision makers at UK financial institutions and banks, via independent polling agency Censuswide, to measure the current state of diversity and digital skills levels in the banking and finance sectors.

Despite claiming DE&I as a priority, 69 per cent say that their firm doesn’t reflect it in practice.

Over four in five financial institutions have female representation at C-Suite level, with 84 per cent citing that investing in diversity, inclusion and equity would boost the overall productivity of their organisation.

It was also revealed that two thirds believe the sector doesn’t support people returning to work after children, with limited flexibility and parenting schemes available.

Sheila Flavell CBE, Chief Operating Officer for FDM Group, who commissioned the poll, commented: “Diversity, equity and inclusion in the workplace is an important area for businesses to prioritise, providing equal opportunities at all levels. Promoting measures such as access to digital skills training programmes can empower staff development and give them the foundation to take up highly skilled roles in banking, FinTech and financial services.”

“Solving the diversity gap faced by businesses in the financial services sector isn’t an overnight task, but it is important to deliver constant progress towards the goal of creating a diverse workforce. Outlining flexible diversity policies such as remote working options for returners is a primary way to promote inclusion in the workplace. Setting out and maintaining commitments to diversity will begin closing the gap and foster an industry centred on diverse ideas and skillsets.”

Other findings included 88 per cent suggesting that their organisation would benefit from greater diversity in staff recruitment.

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