Diversity in recruitment remains an important topic. Totum is delighted to publish its latest report on diversity, based on statistics gathered from candidates through 2020.

The past year – at least from March 2020 – has been one of extraordinary business challenges as the world went into lockdown in the wake of Covid. In just one week, everyone shifted to working from home and this inevitably had an impact on typical business practices and processes.

Despite that, Totum’s latest diversity in recruitment statistics show that we have still managed to maintain our strong commitment to recruitment practices that promote diversity and inclusion. In this year we hosted diversity webinars – including ‘How to create the most diverse company in Britain’ – and signed up to the Recruitment Agency Race Fairness Commitment, activities all representing our active determination to support diversity and inclusivity in the workplace.

This piece details highlights from our latest diversity data, based on information given by candidates who signed up with Totum from January to December 2020. It covers areas including ethnicity, age, gender, sexual orientation and disability.

Click here or on the image below to see Totum’s full report on diversity in recruitment, including all data, graphs and analysis.

Key findings from our diversity in recruitment report

Gender equality: We are delighted that we have maintained an even balance of male to female candidates for the past four years. In 2020, we had 56% female candidates to 44% male, a figure that has remained sufficiently constant to suggest this is a long-term feature of business at Totum.

Ethnicity: In 2020, 26% of our candidates registered as Asian/Asian British, Black/Black British, or mixed/multiple ethnic groups. These results have been consistent since 2017 but we continue to work hard to further improve our ethnic diversity mix. In this year, for example, we were delighted to sign up to the Recruitment Agency Race Fairness Commitment, launched in July 2020. We are also proud of our partnership with SEO-London, a charity giving young people from diverse ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds access to elite employers and support for career success.

Age groups: In keeping with our diversity statistics since 2017, our 2020 candidates covered all age ranges up to 65+. Numbers were largely consistent with 2019, although we did notice a drop in the numbers of 16-24 year olds (from 18% to 10%) and a slight rise in numbers of candidates aged 25-34 (29% to 34%) and those aged 54-65 (4% to 10%). Overall, however, these changes represent a fairly typical level of fluctuation – figures in the younger group, for example, are much closer this year to levels seen in 2017 and 2018.

Sexual orientation: The past year saw a slight drop in the number of candidates that identify as lesbian, gay or bisexual (LGB) – from 4% in 2019 to 2% in 2020. This reflects national statistics that show that 2% of the UK population identify as LGB, although is below the 2.7% in London and 4% among younger people, aged 16-24. In 2021, we will focus on further ways to ensure that we communicate the great strides law firms have made in becoming inclusive workplaces for LGBT communities.

Disability: We still need to improve our number of disabled candidates. Our statistics for 2020 show that 2% of our candidates registered during this period identified as disabled, an increase of just 1% on 2019. Given that an estimated 19% of the working-age UK population are disabled (according to Government data), we will endeavour to go further to improve this result and support more disabled candidates to register and find great jobs with us. We are currently working on initiatives to support candidates with disabilities and health conditions and will report back as we progress.

Diverse future

We are very pleased to see that we have maintained our diversity scores overall – a good balance of men and women across all age ranges continue to make use of our recruitment services and we have maintained our levels of ethnically diverse candidates. But we want to build upon these results. Our Race Fairness Commitment pledge and work with SEO-London, for example, are a few of the ways in which we hope to make a difference in 2021 and beyond.

Across all areas, we will continue to work extremely hard – and in partnership with our law firm clients – to support diversity in recruitment into the legal profession.

To find out more about our work in diversity and CSR, visit Our Community page.

If you would like to know more about our our diversity in recruitment initiatives, or would like to share any ideas on improving diversity in recruitment, please contact [email protected]

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