We’re leaping up the rankings in the Social Mobility Employer Index

We are now ranked 52 of 149 organisations in the Index, across 25 sectors, spanning financial services, law, banking, insurance and the public sector. The Index places a spotlight on how employers are performing across eight areas of social mobility, including entry routes, recruitment and selection, attraction and advocacy. Participating employers receive feedback, with data and recommendations for improvement based on six years of analysis and insights best practice. 

Our improved data collection, targeted activity with young people, and our efforts to attract students from a wider range of universities, strengthened our position in the 2022 rankings. The results also provide us with insights to continue addressing social mobility challenges.

Emma Holden, our Global Head of Human Resources said: “We believe that diversity of thought is critical to succeeding in modern business. Attracting and retaining talented people who can understand and embrace different perspectives ultimately leads to more insightful and innovative perspectives for our clients.” 

We’ve partnered with the Social Mobility Foundation (SMF) for the past six years, which releases the annual index. The foundation supports high-achieving students from low-income backgrounds across the UK to get into top universities and establish careers. They provide practical support, from mentoring and guidance, to personal statement checking and internship opportunities.

Together with the foundation, we provide meaningful job opportunities to young people who lack guidance or networks to establish careers. This supports our commitment to promoting equality and breaking down barriers to access the financial services industry.   

“We work hard to ensure inclusion and diversity is at the heart of the decisions we make for our early careers attraction and recruitment programmes. It’s fantastic that our efforts to improve our recruitment and inclusion practices, in particular to support people from lower socioeconomic backgrounds, has been recognised,” says Lauren Hillier, Talent Acquisition, Schroders. “We look forward to seeing what more we can do to drive positive change.” 

Social Mobility in our Early Careers programmes:

To promote equality and broaden our talent outreach, our Early Careers team works closely with a number of proactive organisations and initiatives, including the SMF, IntoUniversity, Investment 20/20 and upReach via the Diversity Project. Collaborating with these organisations is essential to engaging with students that we previously hadn’t reached, allowing us to both increase awareness and demystify our industry, and deepen our recruitment talent pool.

In 2022, we successfully placed three candidates from our IntoUniversity fast-track event onto our summer internship programmes and then into our formal recruitment process.

We saw a further eight SMF undergraduate students attend our pilot diversity fast-track event alongside students from our Schroders Giving partners, Amos Bursary and IntoUniversity. This was the first time we’d brought all three organisations together, as part of our continued efforts to improve social mobility at Schroders.

The aim is to provide an opportunity for attendees to interview with two business areas, and if successful, be “fast-tracked” to an assessment centre for an internship programme, whilst also providing them networking opportunities beyond their membership organisation and peer group. At this year’s event, five students from the SMF secured assessment centres spots for a summer internship starting in June 2024. 

Our people also have the opportunity to support SMF as e-mentors or via our One+1 programme. Launched in 2017, One+1 matches work experience placements offered to young people with existing contacts in our business, ensuring candidates with fewer, or no, connections also access the same opportunities. 

These placements offer varied experience as candidates join different teams across our business. For example they might work on coding, reviewing sustainability-related methodologies or researching charity portfolios and how they invest their funds; all aimed at busting myths, developing skills and confidence, meeting our experts and gaining an insight into the investment management industry and different entry routes. The 2022 placement also included a unique tour around Schroders Greencoat’s solar farm at Potters Bar.  

Progress Together:

We’re proud to be a Founding Partner of Progress Together, a nationwide initiative to improve socioeconomic diversity at senior levels in the financial services sector. Progress Together comprises 12 founding partners and 10 supporters, and is the first  membership body of its kind to focus on progression and retention to improve socioeconomic diversity in the UK financial services sector.  

Hear from our people about how we are continuing to create a more inclusive workplace here at Schroders:

Related news:

- Why diverse abilities matter 
- Why have we removed the 2:1 requirement from our early careers recruitment policy? 
- Apply here for Schroders roles

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