Monday, June 24, 2024

East Midlands among top regions for female trade workers – yet only making up 2.35% of workforce

A new study reveals that despite East Midlands having the third-highest number of female trade workers, women only make up 2.35% of the industry workforce.

This new research follows the recent revelation that the industry is one of the least diverse. This shortfall could potentially cost the UK economy around £98 billion in economic growth by 2030¹.

Currently, there are 1,051,508 skilled workers in England and Wales. Of this, 1,026,734 are male, with just 24,774 females making up the remaining workforce. This stark gender disparity in the trade sector is a pressing issue that needs immediate attention.

So, just how diverse is East Midlands skilled trades workforce? By analysing the data, business insurance experts can reveal the demographic differences across the skilled trades sector in the top three UK regions, including East Midlands.

The top three female-to-male diversity in the skills trade workforce:

  Female Male
Region Total % Total %
London 4,986 3.42% 140,655 96.58%
South West 2,818 2.36% 116,507 97.64%
East Midlands 1,990 2.35% 82,831 97.65%

Kyle Eaton, business insurance expert, offers tips on how trade businesses can attract diverse talent: “Workplaces focusing on diversity have a range of experiences, opinions and beliefs that can benefit your business, improve morale and solve problems creatively. With this in mind, here are some pointers to attract diverse talent to your skilled trades business:

  1. Review your recruitment strategy

“The first step in attracting and hiring a diverse workforce and fostering inclusivity is evaluating how you appeal to applicants. Start by looking through job descriptions and identifying any language that could put off diverse applicants, including gendered language like ‘tradesman’.

  1. Focus on the positives

“Make sure to highlight the benefits of a career as a skilled tradesperson. As the skills gap keeps widening, working in a trade is in high demand, offering diverse recruits job satisfaction and a steady wage.

  1. Promote a supportive company culture

“When attracting diverse talent in skilled trades, workers want to feel respected, valued and safe. So, make sure to reinforce a supportive company culture. This can mean different things to different people. You could start with acknowledging and addressing a gender pay gap if it exists within your business. You could also provide opportunities for training and education.

  1. Encourage word-of-mouth referrals

“Ask your existing staff to use their networks to attract diverse talent. This means you can hire from a wider pool of potential recruits who might not think a skilled trades career could include them. You could encourage your employees to share a job vacancy with underrepresented groups within their networks to boost your referrals.

  1. Target diverse spaces

“Tailor your recruitment efforts to include places where underrepresented people are more likely to see them. Increasing your visibility in these areas shows you are committed to attracting diverse recruits and makes you a more attractive proposition for them.”

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