Cross-industry toolkit

For employers



Understand the current situation; inform activities; evaluate change.

Any forward-looking socio-economic diversity and inclusion strategy begins with data and this will help shape your plans at every step. Watch the video to find out more or read our full guidance below.


Activities at each level are related, but distinguished by scale, detail or commitment.

Invite applicants and staff to disclose their socio-economic background anonymously, using the questions on the Measurement page.

Assure them that their data will:

  • be stored and handled in line with GDPR best practice
  • be used in aggregate to help make evidence-based decisions
  • not be used for appointment and promotion decisions
  • not be accessible beyond the core team in HR

Aim for a response rate of around two-thirds.


Activities at each level are related, but distinguished by scale, detail or commitment.

Provide a variety of mechanisms to encourage and enable employees to disclose data year-round.

For example:

  • internal communications
  • annual diversity surveys

Make response to surveys compulsory for employees (always with the option “prefer not to say”). Aim for overall response rates of at least 70%.

Share response rates internally and brief senior managers on progress and targets in their areas.

Target encouragement and support at functions or grades where response rates are low.


Compare aggregated data on socioeconomic background against peers within the organisation and against national benchmarks.

Use evidence to inform the overarching strategy and underpin evaluation.


Benchmark disaggregated data by function and grade to understand the organisation’s socio-economic profile in greater detail.

Identify intersectionality between socio-economic background and other characteristics and their effect on different outcomes.