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Diplomatic Service: Recruitment

Volume 491: debated on Wednesday 22 April 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs with reference to the answer of 6 November 2006, Official Report, column 843W, on the Diplomatic Service, what progress his Department has made towards its commitment in recruiting a talented and diverse workforce which reflects the society it serves at each pay band level. (244270)

The following table shows percentages of staff being paid via the FCO payroll split in terms of gender, ethnicity, disability and pay band.

Percentage

FCO pay band

As of 1 April 2006

As of 1 April 2007

As of 1 April 2008

Band A

Female Staff

56.5

55.7

56.4

Minority Ethnic

11.9

18

19.3

Disabled

5.1

7.5

7.2

Band B

Female Staff

52

50.4

49.9

Minority Ethnic

8.1

10.5

10.4

Disabled

2.9

3.8

3.8

Band C

Female Staff

33.4

33.3

33

Minority Ethnic

3.1

4.6

5

Disabled

2.4

3.6

3.4

Band D

Female Staff

30.6

31.3

32.1

Minority Ethnic

2.2

3.2

3

Disabled

2.4

3.1

3.3

SMS

Female Staff

16.4

17.3

19.4

Minority Ethnic

2

2.9

3.7

Disabled

1.6

2.9

2.4

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has developed a range of initiatives launched at various levels of the organisation in order to recruit a more talented and diverse work force.

For example, since November 2006 we have implemented an undergraduate work experience programme designed to promote ethnic diversity and social inclusion, as well as taking part in Cabinet Office-led internships for students from ethnic minority backgrounds and for students with registered disabilities.

Since September 2007 we have opened up all of our Senior Management Structure jobs to candidates from across Whitehall.

In addition, in 2007 we organised an external recruitment campaign at Band D level, targeted at a diverse range of individuals from backgrounds outside of the FCO with the skills we require.