Deloitte has become one of the first employers to publish data on the socio-economic and educational background of its partners and employees.
The data was taken from a sample of more than 1,000 of Deloitte UK’s partners and employees and reveals that 43% of its staff attended a non-selective state school, 16% an academically selective grammar school and 20% an independent school. The remaining 21% of the sample either attended a school outside of the UK or chose not to disclose the information.
Half (51%) were the first in their family to go to university, while 9% received free school meals. Around one-eighth (14%) were from families who received welfare benefits while they were at school.
David Sproul, senior partner and chief executive of Deloitte UK, said he hoped the data would dispel perceptions of elitism potentially surrounding the sector. “We want to show that everyone can thrive, develop and succeed in our firm but realise that a perception exists among some that the professional and financial services sectors are a ‘closed shop’,” he said. “This view is not helped by the lack of information available. We hope that by publishing this data we can go some way to dispelling this myth, while also recognising that we have a lot of work to do before we truly reflect the clients and communities we serve.”
Emma Codd, managing partner for talent at Deloitte UK, said the firm plans to take this transparency even further. “Later this year we will extend the sample of our data to improve the accuracy and transparency in our reporting,” she said. “We are also encouraging our people to tell us of their own experiences of social mobility and any challenges they have faced along the way. Finally, we urge other businesses to join us in publishing this data to remove barriers to progress.”
Skills minister Nick Boles praised Deloitte. “Joining forces with leading firms, we are working to ensure that everyone has a fair chance and is judged on their merits,” he said. “I want to thank Deloitte, and the government’s other Social Mobility Champions, who are providing real leadership in this important area.”