All In Report reveals action plan for more inclusive UK advertising workforce

Posted on Tuesday 15 June 2021 | IAB UK

All In Census garners 16,000 responses, informing the Advertising Association’s Inclusion Working Group’s action plan to tackle inclusion of Black, Disabled and Working Class talent.

Improving the representation of Black, disabled and working-class talent are the first series of actions from the results of the All In Census, a landmark survey of more than sixteen thousand UK advertising professionals. The survey asked the industry to share experiences in the workplace and collected a unique dataset about the industry’s make-up, highlighting strengths and areas for action.

The All In Report, available here, has been published by the industry’s Inclusion Working Group, formed by the Advertising Association, IPA and ISBA to build a workplace where everyone feels they belong. Calls to action include adopting the newly launched BRiM framework, ensuring online accessibility for UK advertising’s websites and using the Social Mobility Commission Toolkit for the Creative Industries, which the Advertising Association will publish shortly.


Positives include:

  • 83% of participants believe their company is actively taking steps to be more inclusive

  • Ethnic minorities make up 16% of the UK advertising workforce, compared to 12% in the UK working population and this level increases to 24% of 18-24 year olds


Areas for action:

  • Just 1% of Black talent is in C-suite positions compared to 3% representation in the general UK population

  • Disabled talent are underrepresented (just 9% vs 20% working age population) with 22% likely to leave their organisation compared to the industry average of 9%

  • People whose parents had professional backgrounds are significantly overrepresented (64% vs 37% national average)

  • 20% of UK advertising professionals attended fee paying schools versus a national average of just 8%

  • Mental health is a problem across the workforce with nearly a third (31%) of our workforce stressed or anxious


The All In Report has pinpointed key actions for the industry to make swift progress, specifically:

  • On improving the experience and representation of Black talent, the rapid adoption of the new launched BRiM framework, available here

  •  On supporting disabled professionals, the immediate audit of websites across the industry to ensure full  accessibility online

  • On encouraging talent from working class backgrounds, the uptake of the Social Mobility Commission Toolkit for the Creative Industries


In addition, a comprehensive directory of inclusion schemes and initiatives that can be accessed by companies in the UK advertising industry has been compiled by the Inclusion Working Group, which can be accessed here.

Kathryn Jacob, CEO of Pearl & Dean and Chair of the Inclusion Group, commented: “It is now time for action. Our census results have provided the benchmark data we need and the way forward is clear. We urge all companies in our industry to engage with the All In Action Plan to help make rapid progress on these critical areas. Everyone deserves a workplace where they feel included and it is in our power to make that happen now. The benefits, social and economic, will be huge as we build our way out of the pandemic.”


Further findings from the All In Census include:

  • 53% of women who took parental leave felt it disadvantaged their career while a 10% pay gap emerges at senior manager level and above

  • 2% of women have experienced sexual discrimination

  • Only 38% feel able to report discrimination against others, dropping to 26% when reporting personal discrimination


The Inclusion Working Group will be publishing a further series of actions later this year as it continues to review the All In Census results and where greater inclusion can be achieved. The group has also introduced a process for any company wishing to declare publicly that it is an All In Company. They will be asked to provide evidence of implementation across the three actions, in return for All In materials which can be used in company credentials. You can access the full results from the All In Report and Action Plan, at the Advertising Association’s All In Hub.

Related content

Creativity is the top driver of trust in advertising for UK public

Learn more
Rainbow sidewalk

First All In Champions named including IAB UK

Learn more

AA/WARC: UK ad spend set to surpass £29 billion

Learn more

Advertising Association: UK ad spend up 5.9% in last 12 months

Learn more

Why digital advertising works

Discover why digital advertising is effective for reaching your customers and building brands.