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Football Leadership Diversity Code


Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) is at the heart of everything we do. The Club’s DEI vision is to create an environment in which everyone feels welcome and has equal access to the Club, it’s services and facilities. We are therefore proud to be a founding signatory of the Football Leadership Diversity Code (FLDC), which was launched in October 2020 to encourage meaningful change in recruitment and address gender and ethnicity under-representation in roles across all areas of English Football Clubs.

Our FLDC results for the 22.23 season show that the Club has once again met its targets for Black, Asian and Mixed-Heritage (BAMH) new hires within the Senior Leadership and Team Operations categories.  The Club continues to use a broad and diverse range of job boards to advertise vacancies on, including the FLDC’s own vacancy webpage. In the long-term, Club remains committed to driving employment opportunities for local residents and, during the 22.23 season, has supported its charitable Foundation in facilitating two Jobs Fairs at the Stadium. 

The FLDC’s Team Operations category includes the largest number of new hires at the Club and spans a vast range of departments such as Finance, IT, Premium, Partnerships, Marketing, Content and Medical.  After seeing an encouraging increase in the number of females hired within the Team operations category during the 21.22 season, we are pleased to have now surpassed the target of 30%, achieving 36% of female hires for the 22.23 season.

The Club continues its strong track record of providing opportunities for BAMH coaches to excel within the game, reflected in our results for both of the ‘Men’s Coaching’ categories. We have talent pathway programmes in place at both our Boys and Girls Academies, as well as our Global Development Coaching (GDC) programme which delivers both Girls and Boys programmes. For the purposes of FLDC reporting, our GDC employees have been included within the ‘non-senior coaches- Men’s’ coaching category.

Our 22.23 FLDC results show that we are yet to achieve the female new hires target of 30% within the Senior Leadership category.  Gender equity and, more specifically, offering greater support for women into leadership roles, remains a long-term focus for The Club.  As an example of this commitment, the Club signed up to the Department for Work and Pensions Social Mobility Pledge Consortium in June 2023. As part of this, the Club joins other major employers in offering mentoring and work experience opportunities to support people into the workplace.

As part of the Club’s commitment to the FLDC, the 2022/23 season was the 3rd consecutive season that the Club submitted its recruitment statistics to the FA.  Although the recruitment targets set by the FLDC encourage action to be taken, it is important to note the targets only reflect short-term change. By looking at recruitment data only, the FLDC does not give a full picture of the diverse make-up of our Club and our existing employees.  To gauge a more holistic view of the Club’s workforce makeup and its key groups, we therefore conduct DEI data audits every season in line with the requirements of the Premier League’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Standard (PLEDIS.) 

As part of this Equality Monitoring Process, data is collected on gender and ethnicity, as well as other protected characteristics such as disability and sexual orientation (when age-appropriate) from our Academy Players (Boys and Girls), 1st Team Players (Men’s and Women’s), job applicants, employees, supporters and Foundation participants.  This data is analysed in line with the Club’s long-term equity targets and external benchmarking data, with long-term actions put in place to further address under-representation across the Club. The Club therefore remains committed to removing barriers, promoting and celebrating diversity.