Civil service and best practice and equality monitoring

Protected characteristic: 

Civil service and best practice and equality monitoring

ONS use of data to monitor and set its Equality and Diversity Objectives

In 2008/9 ONS recognised the need for a high level management tool which would bring together a range of equality and diversity data to enhance its ability to understand the experience of protected groups in ONS, to identify any issues that may exist and to prioritise which issues needed to be tackled.

ONS developed an Equality and Diversity Dashboard (based on a draft template created by the Civil Service Data Monitoring Group which now does not exist). This Dashboard brings together information on:

  • progress against its SCS and feeder grade targets for gender, ethnicity and disability
  • staff profile by grade across the protected characteristics;
  • staff declaration rates for each protected characteristic;
  • information from its HR Data Monitoring process for performance management; promotion; recruitment; grievance and training for each protected characteristic
  • People Survey data across the protected characteristics;
  • a simple RAG status to identify progress.

This dashboard has, for the past two years, been discussed by the ONS Equality and Diversity Steering Group, to identify and monitor priority areas for action for the coming twelve months. The dashboard is shared widely across the business. ONS staff network groups are asked to feed into the development of action plans and make recommendations on the way forward. Its current priority areas have remained the same for 2011 and 2012:

  • disability;
  • representation of women at SCS;
  • part time working.

This has resulted in action plans for each group. Although it is still too early to see the medium term effects of these action plans, ONS has noticed an increase in its employment engagement index for its disabled staff in its most recent People Survey. The diversity dashboard forms a significant part of the ONS Equality and Diversity Report, which is published on its website. A link to the latest report which includes the Diversity Dashboard is available here:


* Best practice guidance on monitoring equality and diversity in employment, Civil Service March 2012