Our ethnicity action plan

We continue to be transparent about our challenges, hold ourselves accountable for progress, and set an example to the firms we regulate.

We are working hard to make sure we reflect the diversity of ethnicity in the society we serve and that everyone, regardless of their ethnic background, has equal opportunities, and is able to fulfil their potential.

We acknowledge that we are on a race equity journey. In 2020, we created an ethnicity action plan to make clear our challenges, create accountability for progress and set an example for the firms we regulate. Our representation and pay gap data both show that we have a race and ethnicity imbalance across the organisation and some difficult issues to address. 

Our areas of focus

We have grouped the strategic actions of our ethnicity action plan into five areas of initial focus: 

  • Transparency and data to hold us to account: Having more granular data allows us to better understand our issues and be more targeted in our action. This part of our ethnicity action plan focuses on pay gap, data breakdown and our targets.
  • Minority ethnic talent pipeline and progression: Investing more in developing and progressing minority ethnic talent to address structural imbalances in our organisation.
  • Training and support: Providing the necessary training and support is key for advancement in racial equality.
  • Accountability: It's vital that all colleagues are accountable for their part to play in making progress; we commit to keeping accountability embedded right across the organisation.
  • Our role as a regulator: We remain committed to prioritising diversity and inclusion, as part of our Public Section Equality Duty and because it's so integral to good culture and conduct.

Transparency and data to hold us to account

We continue to analyse our ethnicity pay gap across UK census ethnicity categories, to increase transparency in our ethnicity pay gap reporting. We also review our pay gap by contractual grade and publish intersection gender and ethnicity pay dap data. 

We’re transforming our diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) dashboard to offer additional functionality and granularity. This will allow local management teams to  take focused and more positive action to address local diversity issues. 

We increased our 2025 SLT ethnicity target to 20% and introduced a 25% target for minority ethnic representation across all pipeline grades. We have also committed to targeting 4% SLT Black representation within our 20% SLT target for 2025. 

In December 2021, ExCo reviewed the organisational risk appetite towards DEI data and how we use this in targeting and driving meaningful change. Our approach will continue to be risk aware but will be more ambitious in how we use data to identify issues and adopt informed approaches to our DEI challenges.

Minority ethnic talent pipeline and progression  

We broadened how we used a number of new recruitment practices, following pilots of these in 2020. These include the use of diverse hiring panels and the sharing of interview questions in advance of candidate interviews.  We also have a number of programmes we are taking part in to progress our minority ethnic talent, which include:

  • Race and Ethnicity Sponsorship Programme - we have launched a third cohort  of our flagship minority ethnic talent accelerator programme, which aims to tackle the under-representation of minority ethnic staff in our leadership pipeline. 
  • Inclusive Talent Review Process - we have now implemented and delivered the first round of these reviews. Periodically, line managers and leadership teams discuss the development and future potential of our people as part of our Performance, Career and Development (PCD) cycle. These reviews provide insights into the depth and breadth of capability across the FCA and support informed decision making on development, deployment and recruitment of people. Our new approach is designed to mitigate the influence of racial biases by introducing greater objectivity, inclusivity and transparency to the way that we assess, discuss and develop the potential of our people.  
  • Black British Talent Accelerator - we participated in this programme in 2021. It’s delivered by the Black British Business Awards (BBBA) and provides participants with opportunities to reflect, deliberate and develop, surrounded by minority ethnic peers and senior executive role models. We had two representatives take part in the 2021 programme.  
  • The Black Futures Programme – we ran this programme in April 2021, welcoming a cohort of Black undergraduates and acting as a diverse pipeline for our summer internship and graduate programmes. We extended three offers onto our 2022 summer internship, which has a total of 44 places. We extended eight offers onto our 2022 graduate programme to previous Black Futures Programme participants who had been offered a place on and successfully completed the 2021 summer internship. 

Training and support

We completed a roll out to SLT and people managers across the organisation of D&I workshops focusing on privilege, microaggressions and bystander intervention. Some local areas have continued to expand these workshops by delivering them for all colleagues. 

The Spectrum race and ethnicity network has continued to host ‘Time to Connect’ sessions focused on different topics and often delivered in collaboration with other network groups. These sessions are open to all employees and offer a safe space for colleagues to connect and speak freely about issues and ideas on topics of race and ethnicity.  

During Black History Month in 2021, the Spectrum network delivered a full series of events and awareness raising activities, accessible to all our employees. This included four talks from external speakers, ‘fire-side’ style chats with senior minority ethnic colleagues, blogs from colleagues across the organisation, and a social media ‘take-over’ of the our social media platforms.  

We have also introduced supplementary interview skills training resources, to improve knowledge of bias and its impact in the interview and recruitment process, and bolster DEI in decision making.


Our new DEI strategy will place greater focus on accountability across all levels of the organisation. We’re assessing the best ways to integrate contributions towards DEI and performance against DEI metrics into our performance and evaluation processes. 

Our new DEI dashboard will create greater accountability in local management teams by providing more granular data.

Page updates

19/07/2022: Information changed Updated in line with Diversity Annual Report 2021/22
15/07/2021: Information changed Updates following Annual Report 2020/21.