Professional bodies launch Social Mobility Toolkit for the Professions

Mechanism receives backing from UK Government and bodies representing over 1.2 million UK practitioners
 
London, 08:30, 2 March 2012: Social Mobility Toolkit for the Professions, the first common framework to measure the progress of social mobility within the professions, has been launched today by Professions for Good.

The toolkit, researched by Spada on behalf of Professions for Good, surveyed 300 professionals and drew on the expertise of 50 representatives from universities, membership bodies, NGOs, regulators and Government departments. It provides practical recommendations for employer organisations of all sizes, professional bodies and regulators on how they can track and foster social mobility.

The 52 page toolkit examines the economic, business and moral case for social mobility; the state of social mobility in the UK and the recent policy initiatives in this area by the current Government. It also provides best-practice advice on how to collect and process data on social mobility and how organisations can diversify the socio-economic profile of their members and employees.

Universities and Science Minister David Willetts said:

"The Government is committed to investing in a fairer future where social mobility is unlocked and everyone with the potential can access the professions, regardless of their background. A significant proportion of new jobs that are expected to be created in our economy over the next decade are professional ones. We can't afford to let the talent of our people go un-utilised.

"I am delighted that Professions for Good have today published their guidance on how to recruit from the whole of the UK's talent pool to ensure we achieve our goal of a fairer society for everyone."

Louis Armstrong CBE, Chairman of Professions for Good, concluded:

“The professions are a major UK success story, but more can be done to attract individuals from every strata of society.

“Over the past six months, we have conducted intensive research and consulted with professional bodies, employers, Government departments, educational institutes and charities. The toolkit is ready. It now needs to be used. We will review its uptake and report on progress regularly. Over time we will all benefit: individuals when aspirations can be fulfilled and the professions as they access the widest range of talent available.”

Mark Walley, RICS’ Executive Director UK, which hosted the launch event, added:

“Ensuring the property profession is accessible to all is extremely important and RICS is committed to making sure surveying is an attractive and viable career option to all those with the ability and want to succeed. That is why we launched our Associate pathways, to make sure those from non-traditional backgrounds can get a first step on the ladder to becoming a chartered surveyor. Two years after its initial launch, more than 1,500 people have signed up.  As a founding member of Professions for Good, RICS has been actively involved in the production of the Social Mobility Toolkit and encourage other professions to implement the best practice recommendations.”

The toolkit has its origins in the 2009 ‘Unleashing Aspirations’ report by Alan Milburn, which highlighted the barriers to entry and social mobility within the UK professions, and the detrimental effect this has on the professions and society at large.  

In its aftermath, the Department for Business, Innovation of Skills’ Gateways to the Professions Collaborative Forum and Panel on Fair Access to the Professions recommended the development of a ‘Social Mobility Toolkit’ for use by the professions. In order to mobilise the professions, Professions for Good and Spada were commissioned to develop today’s toolkit.

By collecting sample indicative data every three years, the professions will be able to track their progress against the Coalition Government’s Social Mobility Strategy, and report to the relevant regulatory bodies and the Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission.

Social Mobility Toolkit

The public will be able to download the Social Mobility Toolkit for the Professions from 9.30am on 2nd March 2012. The research conducted by Spada, on behalf of Professions for Good, was funded by the Legal Services Board and the General Medical Council with additional support from the Chartered Insurance Institute and British Dental Association.

About Professions for Good

Representing 1.2 million practitioners, Professions for Good is a collaboration of the bodies responsible for the entry policy, professional standards and qualifications across many of the UK’s largest professions. These are AAT – Association of Accounting Technicians; ACCA - Association of Chartered Certified Accountants; The Bar Council; CIOT - Chartered Institute of Taxation; CII - Chartered Insurance Institute; CIPD - Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development; CMI - Chartered Management Institute; ICAEW - Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales; RAE - Royal Academy of Engineering; RIBA - Royal Institute of British Architects; RICS - Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and the Science Council.

Professions for Good works together in the public interest to uphold:

  • Fair access and meritocracy
  • Professional standards and ethics
  • Fact- and practice-based public policy

About Spada
 
Spada is one of the UK’s premier communications and research consultants to built environment, professional, financial services and business-to-business clients. The consultancy’s ability to shape corporate reputation derives from a unique fusion of issues-based media relations, branding, marketing, research and crisis communications advice. Founded in 1994, Spada has a team of 25 in London, as well as a network of associates around the globe. The consultancy is led by Chief Executive Gavin Ingham Brooke, who has been active in the corporate and professional services sector since 1988.