Diversity in the UK Creative Scene Revealed!

Diversity in the UK creative scene has been revealed. Big Music investigated so that you don’t have to!

Diversity in the UK Creative Scene Revealed!

If you are unfamiliar with the UK statistics on diversity, let us break it down for you. The Department of Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport is the UK’s governing body that oversees the creative industry.

In July 2017, they brought out statistics on how the industry is performing on diversity. Check this out:

Diversity Roundup

  • Good news! Employment is growing by 25.4%. That’s an additional 5.2 million new jobs since 2011! Your decision to work in the creative sector is a good decision indeed!
  • Not so good news; there are more men in the sector than women. In fact, the sector is dominated by men, and the industry has more men than the UK workforce average! (63% men and 37% women compared to the UK average of 53% men and 47% women)
  • Some more not so good news; 88% of jobs are conducted by White people and only 11% conducted by BAME (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic) people.

Still Confused?

Still a bit confused about how this impacts you directly? Don’t worry, we’ve broken it down further!

Firstly, creatives are now more likely to secure a job in the industry, which is awesome!

Even the fashion scene that has always been a tricky field to get into, has seen a jobs boom of 57% since 2011. So, if you have always dreamt of walking the corridors of your favourite fashion labels, that dream is more likely than ever to come true!

Women in the Creative Scene

FashionHowever, there are certain parts of the report that are a little alarming. Women are massively underrepresented in the creative scene.

Many blame the long working hours and increased amount of travel as the reason. Especially as stats show that women don’t find this convenient when balancing their careers with childcare.

A lot of people think the solution could lie in the balancing of childcare between men and women in society.

The 2017 Modern Family Index shows that this is the exact mind frame modern Dads are taking!

More than half of millennial Dads want to move to a less stressful job because they find it difficult to balance work and family life. More so, modern Dads are choosing to work fewer hours to help their partners with childcare at home. In 2001, 40% of UK dads worked at least 48 hours; this declined to 31% by 2013.

Sarah Jackson, who is the CEO of Working Families highlighted that millennial Dads seem to have a different perspective on fatherhood compared to previous generations. She claims that they are more likely to be dropping their children off at nursery than millennial Mums! These younger Dads have aspirations of what fatherhood looks like. For them, there is equality at home, and both them and their partners work.

This is an exciting step forward and if this continues, it may help encourage more women into the creative scene without having them sacrifice starting a family.

Ethnic Diversity

Edward Enninful, Editor in Chief of British Vogue

Another area that the creative scene needs to improve on is in ethnic-minority representation.

It is hard to ignore the overwhelming majority of White people that dominate the industry! I mean, 88%? It gets worse as you climb the ladder!

There is certainly a deficit when you consider the fact that many creative businesses are based in extremely diverse areas such as London and Manchester. There also seems to be no real reason for this as there is enough qualified BAME talent to easily diversify the industry.

However, there is still some good news to stem; businesses have become more aware of this problem and really feel they are lacking in skills by having such a non-diverse pool of talent.

This awareness has seen an increase in ethnic minority talent. BAME creatives have increased by 5.8% since 2015.

Not all doom and gloom!

Overall, there are still areas for improvement in the creative industry. The industry is surprisingly lacking in women and trailing behind the UK average. In addition to their not so good record for employing women, they have an even worse record for employing BAME talent.

Though this may sound doom and gloom, there has been a massive move in the right direction. We have seen more women in leadership positions, with creatives like Jessica Huie and Althea Efunshile leading the way.

We have also seen businesses adopting a more open method of recruitment that is welcoming to a wider pool of talent – including ethnic minorities. Just like women in leadership, we have seen more BAME talent in leadership. People like Edward Enninful taking on powerful positions in media.

Though these are steps in the right direction, our generation is key to making sure the creative industry continues to stay on this trajectory. We need to continue to push forward with our creativity, our passion and our demand for diversity!

We have the support of organisations like Connect Mentors and Taylor Bennett Trust working hard to increase diversity in business- not just diversity in race and gender, but also 55+, returning mothers, non-university qualified, disabled, etc.

The creative sector may not seem so bright for women and BAME talent today, but with the changes that are being made and millennials slowly climbing to mid-senior levels, we are seeing a change in the right direction.