Being a working class in the banking sector: “My father was a bus driver”

This site recently published an article claiming that the the working classes are an ethnic minority in banks. As someone who has made their own journey of social mobility, many of these points resonated with me.

I have long believed that the white working class is often overlooked when it comes to diversity initiatives. Some organizations like my previous company – where I was responsible for social mobility and had full support – are doing a great job in this area, but the data shows that the industry as a whole needs to do more.

There is a class cap for financial and professional services (SPF) and the data confirms this. Bridge Group research shows that 89% of leadership positions in financial services are held by people from higher socio-economic backgrounds (defined by parental occupation at 14). This compares to 33% of the UK workforce, 52% of UK CEOs across the economy and 52% of FPS employees at all seniority levels.

If you are from the working class of finance, it may be more difficult to get promoted. The same research shows that employees from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds progress 25% more slowly than their peers unrelated to performance.

This is a disparity that has been recognized by HM Treasury and the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy who have appointed the City of London Corporation to lead an independent task force, of which I am a member of the advisory board.

My role will be to play the role of sounding board and critical friend for new ideas. I would like to speak for more than myself, so if you work in financial services, have a similar socio-economic background to mine, then I am interested in your story.

Personally, my dad was a bus driver and I went to a less than great public school. For those who think someone’s socio-economic background doesn’t matter in our time, I have received many comments from concerned friends / associates who have questioned my decision to “get out” of. myself through my participation. QED, or rather, says Nuff.

Dipen Jobanputra is a former SVP in algo trading and sales. If you would like to share your experiences, please email them via [email protected], or leave a comment at the bottom of this page.

Do you have a confidential story, tip or comment you would like to share? Contact: [email protected] in the first place. Whatsapp / Signal / Telegram also available. Be with us if you leave a comment at the bottom of this article: All of our comments are human-moderated. Sometimes these humans may be asleep or away from their desks, so it may take some time for your comment to appear. Ultimately, it will – unless it’s offensive or defamatory (in which case it won’t).

photo by Marjan Blan | @marjanblan at Unsplash

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