In the interest of Knowing Our Stuff and Doing it Right, two of our four core company values, Field recently dug into our teams’ EDI (equity, diversity and inclusion) data. We wanted to understand our team demographics, so we can understand what’s working, and where we can improve in the future.
As a young company that prides itself on innovation and forward thinking, we know that this type of work is vital. For Field, a key player in an industry that has well-known diversity issues, this sentiment rings especially true.
As is well documented, a diverse workforce leads to enhanced business performance. Studies have even shown that there is a strong positive correlation between diversity and profitability of a business. This is largely due to increases in workforce creativity and productivity, along with enhanced communication and problem-solving ability.
So, what did we do?
At the end of 2022, we set out to dig into our teams’ data so that we could consider our plan of action, specifically focussing on the areas where we were confident we could have the biggest impact. We asked our team to complete a short survey with multiple-choice identity questions broken down into 8 categories: gender; gender identity; sexual orientation; race & ethnicity; religion; nationality; caring status and socio-economic background.
We set our benchmarks in a few different ways including industry data (i.e. similar companies or professions), using data provided by specialist groups (like Stonewall) and using global, national and London-specific data gathered in the most recent census. This allowed us to understand where we were on track, and where there was room for improvement.
We saw an excellent response rate of 89%, which was great to see and gave us a really accurate picture of our team’s make-up, and where we should focus our efforts in the short and long term.
With 34% of Fielders identifying as women, we’re tracking broadly in line with the renewable energy sector, which was 32% women in 2018, and a little ahead of the Tech sector which was 26% in 2019. Making sure we maintain this focus on gender diversity within the team as we grow is a key focus for us in 2023.
Gender Expression & Identity
Nobody at Field uses they/them pronouns, nor self-reported as being transgender. Given that 1% of the UK population identifies as transgender or non-binary, it’s not surprising that this group isn’t currently represented in our team.
10% of our team identified as a member of the LGBTQIA+ community, which is in line with the results of the last UK census (11%) and Ipsos’s LGBT+ Pride 2021 Global Survey (9%). 12% of our team preferred not to share their sexual orientation.
Race & Ethnicity
78% of Fielders identified as white, 10% as Asian, 2.5% black, 2.5% mixed ethnicity and 7% preferred not to say. Whilst this shows that we’re broadly in line with the UK population, we’re not accurately reflective of London’s demographic, where 21% of the population are Asian and 13% as black (2021 Census). Improving the diversity of our team in terms of Race & Ethnicity as one of our EDI groups’ OKRs.
The majority of Fielders do not identify as religious; with 68% answering ‘no religion’. 17% said they are Christian, 10% said they practise other religions including Hinduism and Islam and 5% preferred not to say.
We’re a global team, with 7 different nationalities across our team including British, German, Italian, Portuguese, Nigerian, South African and Cypriot. We find this mix of cultural backgrounds gives us a really broad set of reference points when we’re working on shared problems, and we’re looking forward to continuing to build on this strength as we grow internationally.
We wanted to gather this specific data to understand how many Fielders have a caring responsibility for someone other than themselves. We found that 73% of the team have no caring responsibilities, 15% have full time caring responsibilities, with 5% having part time caring responsibilities and 7% preferred not to say. This data helps us to understand the demands on our teams outside of work, so we can design aspects of the employment experience like our family leave entitlements with this in mind. Our goal is to make sure every Fielder is able to maintain a healthy work/life balance.
We asked our team “What was the occupation of your main household earner when you were aged around 14?” This question is widely acknowledged to be the best measure of assessing someone’s socio-economic background and it’s applicable to those of all ages and from all countries. This allows us to segment our team into three categories, based on their socio-economic background: Professional, Intermediate and Lower Socio-economic. The results show that our team is made up of people from primarily middle and upper classes, with 81% classifying their caregiver’s occupation as ‘professional’. Given the high academic entry point for many of our roles this isn’t too surprising, but since the 2021 UK benchmark was only 37% of the population in this group, it’s clear that this is an area where we could stand to increase our diversity.
We really want to lead by example by being transparent about our current team’s make-up, and not shying away from openly discussing both our shortcomings and areas in which we’re excelling. By publishing our teams’ EDI data, we hope to maintain a level of accountability and transparency, to support the actions we take to improve. We also want to encourage others in the industry to ensure that this topic is at the top of their agendas too.
As immediate next steps, our EDI team shared this data internally with the wider team, and held an OKR planning session, building out team commitments to improve our two current weakest areas: Race & Ethnicity and Socio-Economic background. We’re meeting regularly to build on these focus areas, and we’ll be sharing updates periodically - so stay tuned.