Prevent discrimination: Support equality
Stage 2: Collect personal data
Decide what data is relevant and necessary. An employer in the private
sector might want to monitor all protected characteristics or just
certain protected characteristics. Employers in the public sector have
legal duties outlined in the section, Understanding the public sector’s
equality duty, later in this guide.
Look at employees through every stage of their journey with the
employer, from when a job advertisement is first drafted all the way
through to when they retire or leave and are given a reference. This
means gathering data on who has been:
applying for jobs, securing interviews and getting jobs. For
example, did the job advertisement and the channels used produce
enough suitable candidates from different backgrounds?
trained and in what parts of the organisation. For example, are
there more employees from one or two backgrounds who are
getting training opportunities, while colleagues from other
backgrounds are not?
promoted. For example, is there any tendency that while the
organisation’s staff is a mix of both men and women and from
different racial groups, the employees securing most senior
positions are from one group and/or sex?
absent. For example, are there any patterns, apart from reasons
related to pregnancy and maternity, where staff of one sex are
away from work more than the other?
raising grievances. For example, are more staff with a particular
protected characteristic raising grievances than other employees?
disciplined and why. For example, might there be a common
theme where some staff do not seem to understand what is
dismissed or left the organisation. For example, was anyone
dismissed because of discrimination? Or, are employees leaving the
organisation because of bullying or harassment, or other reasons,
concerning a particular protected characteristic or characteristics?
Consider including additional options - as demonstrated in the sample
monitoring form (LINK) – for example, are employees working full-
time or part-time or in flexible working arrangements?
Another source of data on equality, diversity and discrimination can be
from ‘exit interviews’ when staff leave the employer.
Understand that information about some of the protected
characteristics is categorised as ‘sensitive personal data’ under the
Data Protection Act and requires special treatment.