Diversity and inclusion have been a huge focus for many industries over the past few years. There are now multiple surveys which highlight where companies are falling short in the race to achieve true equality and inclusion.

In a recent survey, Marketing Week found that a lack of diversity within marketing is a ticking timebomb that could undermine the creative future of the profession: while 60.9 per cent of respondents were female, their presence significantly lessens as roles become more senior. The same survey revealed that 82 per cent of marketers define themselves as coming from upper middle, middle or lower middle class backgrounds.

Marketing arguably needs to be more diverse than other industries because the industry is responsible for stimulating demand for products across the whole cross-section of society. Therefore, we’ve listed a few ways that diversity could be improved in the marketing industry.

Alternative routes

Apprenticeships are a brilliant way to attract a more diverse range of employees. Offering practical guidance and real-world experience, apprenticeships are the ultimate alternative to earning a degree. Another main selling point is the pay that apprentices receive while learning their skill; not everyone can afford to get into the debt that comes with university. Although apprentice pay can be both a blessing and a curse – while apprentices do get paid, the pay is sometimes the very thing that puts others off. Low pay for full-time hours as well as attending college is a lot to handle when there is the option to get a full-time role and earn two to three times the amount in the short term.

While apprenticeships are well-known among labour roles, office-based apprenticeships within the technology and marketing sectors are now becoming more readily available as businesses recognise the value of building someone up from that position. It’s now about making sure that the next generation realises that taking this alternative route can prove to be just as valuable as hiring a graduate candidate, with the bigger picture in mind.

Work benefits

Workplace benefits have differed greatly throughout the years. Currently, flexible working is a priority to businesses – and rightly so. The marketing industry is starting to realise the positive impact various benefits can have to their business – remote working, generous parental leave policies and looser working hours are key to attracting a variety of different people from all genders and backgrounds.

Flexible working and relaxed core hours is particularly valuable for those in single-parent households, as well as for primary carers and people whose partners work night shifts.

New hiring methods

Lastly, if you’re looking to improve diversity within your company, it may be worth looking at how you are hiring employees. Everything from the adverts you place when looking for roles to the way the shortlisting process takes place, and the interviews they lead to, has an essential part to play in hiring the right talent. They can also be the prime places that companies lose out on top diverse talent because of these processes.

To make sure your company is hiring the best talent for your company, try different recruitment methods; for example, blind hiring is just one of many ways to eliminate unconscious bias in the recruitment process. This approach is an ideal way to reduce the 20 per cent of people who admit that, even now, they are not fully sure whether or not bias impacts their recruitment decisions.

As well as taking a different method to hiring, there are also a variety of places that businesses can hire from. If you’re looking for a graduate to fill a vacant role, consider making approaches to candidates that are further afield and looking to relocate. Equally, when looking for your next employee, there are skills which are highly sought after, but there are also other disciplines that may add an extra layer to your marketing business that you may not have even considered.

When you’re looking for your next marketing professional, take a moment to think about just what you could be doing differently to make sure you reach all of the talent pool available – you never know who might come knocking.


Tap into our talent pool filled with high skilled and diverse candidates by submitting your vacancy with us – contact us to find out how.