Building a more inclusive bank | RBS

Building a more inclusive bank

We’re proud to be building an inclusive bank and supporting RBS to become a great place to work. Our inclusion policy standard applies to all our colleagues globally, to make sure everyone feels included and valued, regardless of their background. 


2016 overview

  • 89% of colleagues agreed that RBS ‘supports diversity and inclusion in the workplace’, when asked in our 2016 ‘our view’ opinion survey. This is 10 points above the Global Financial Services norm.
  • We got a ‘silver award’ score of 88% in the Business Disability Forum Standard. In 2015, we were unrated.
  • We moved up 19 places to 13th in the Top 100 Stonewall Workplace Equality Index – the highest ranking we’ve ever had.
  • We retained Platinum for our work on Gender in Business in the Community’s Opportunity Now benchmark and our place in the Times Top 50 Employers For Women to work index.
  • We retained Gold for our work on Race in Business in the Community’s Race for Opportunity benchmark.
  • We achieved Top Ten Employer status in the Working Families benchmark.
  • Our employee led networks (ELNs) have grown to over 16,000 members globally.
  • We continued to deliver against our gender targets and across all areas of our inclusion agenda.

Striking a healthy gender balance

We continue to work towards our goal of having at least 30% senior women in our top three leadership layers across each business by 2020 and to be fully gender balanced (50/50) by 2030. Sponsored by Les Matheson, CEO Personal & Business Banking, we have a positive action approach in place, tailored by business, according to the specific challenges they face.  


As at 31 December 2016
Grade #Women #Men %Women
CEO-1 3 10 23
CEO-2 33 73 31
CEO-3 232 443 34
CEO-4 1512 1891 44
Target population(CEO-3 and above) 268 526 34*


*Limited assurance provided by Ernst & Young LLP over total gender balance in top 3 senior layers. 



Demonstrating our commitment to creating gender balance at all levels of the organisation, RBS were one of the first signatories to the HM Treasury Women in Finance Charter requiring organisations to publicly report on progress against the targets they have in place. As at June 2017, we reported to the HM Treasury Women in Finance Charter that the proportion of women in the top three layers of our organisation was 34%. 


We’re also participating in McKinsey’s ‘Women Matter’ research. 


We’ve been active consultants in the process to create the upcoming Gender Pay Gap Reporting regulations. We plan to comply fully with the regulations and make a public disclosure during 2017.



Making things easier for people with disabilities

We are aiming to become a ‘disability smart’ organisation by 2018. To do this, we’ll be making further improvements to things like branch access and car parking spaces.


Key highlights from 2016:

◦  We got a ‘silver award’ score of 88% in the Business Disability Forum Standard. In 2015, we were unrated.


◦  93% of our branches now have level access and we have plans to address remaining 7%.

◦  Workplace adjustments are now delivered 13% faster than previously.


Encouraging ethnic diversity, and producing more leaders from ethnic backgrounds

Across the bank, we encourage ethnic diversity through reciprocal mentoring, external mentoring circles (with other organisations looking to improve their ethnic diversity) and targeted development workshops.

◦  Of our colleagues who tell us their ethnicity, our top three leadership layers are 5% BAME (Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic).

◦  10% of our talent pipeline is BAME.

◦  Around 20% of our colleagues choose not to disclose their ethnicity.


Supporting LGBT colleagues and customers

Our  LGBT agenda continues to deliver a better experience for our LGBT colleagues and customers.

◦  We have improved the process for customers to  update their gender and title on their banking record.

◦  We’ve developed guidance for line managers and colleagues to support colleagues undergoing gender transition.

◦  And we continue to support the wider LGBT community through our sponsorship of the NatWest British LGBT Awards and our participation on various Pride events, including – for the first time – in Poland.


Read our workforce composition and parental leave statistics [PDF 37kb]

Awards and Recognition

In 2016 our work to create an inclusive bank has been recognised externally within the six key benchmarks we participate in:

Platinum ranking from Opportunity Now (gender)

Gold ranking for Race for Opportunity (race)

Times Top 50 Employers for Women

Top Ten Global Employer in Stonewall’s Global Equality Index (LGBT) and top third in the UK index

Silver Status from Disability Business Forum (disability)

Top 10 Employer by Working Families

Related content



Download historic and current Sustainability reports and other useful documents.

Set Tab for lightbox