Building back better and helping those in need

With lockdown continuing the ease in the UK and some semblance of normality returning to our lives, its encouraging to see some financial firms and organisations continuing their hard work to improve workplaces and support the public.

The Diversity Project has relaunched its gender efforts in asset management, targeting 30 per cent female fund managers and a halving of the investment industry’s gender pay gaps by 2030.

The project stated that the proportion of female fund managers has hovered around 10 per cent over the past four years, while the industry’s gender pay gaps were the second largest of any UK sector last year.

Diversity Project chair, Dame Helena Morrissey, said: “We’ve analysed the obstacles and devised a new intensive, wide-ranging set of initiatives to address them and create new enablers for women to progress. And we’ve decided to set ambitious goals to hold our collective feet to the fire and actually deliver the progress needed.”

Earlier in the month, the organisation called for the investment and savings industry to “build back better” as they emerge from the coronavirus crisis.

Diversity Project set out key considerations for firms’ leadership teams and encouraged them to create inclusive cultures while engaging the diverse perspectives that it argued “are needed to deliver answers to complex issues faced by the industry”.

In further positive news, The Association of British Insurers has announced that £83.9m has been pledged in voluntary contributions from firms across the sector to the Covid-19 Support Fund following its launch in May.

The Fund works in partnership with the Charities Aid Foundation and a network that includes the National Emergencies Trust and Business in the Community.

The key aim of the fund is to provide immediate relief to charities affected by Covid-19, as well as a longer-term programme of support for people, communities, and issues where there is the greatest need.

Finally, Quilter has partnered with workplace mental health specialists Spill to launch online resources and a personal counselling service for financial advisers and their staff.

The company highlighted that financial advisers are facing increased demands and workload, while guiding clients through major financial and life events and potentially being concerned that the current pandemic might impact future sustainability of their businesses.

Resources provided by Spill include content on how to prevent burnout and how to beat daily anxiety, and one-to-one support, with these services offered at a 30 per cent discount via Quilter’s There For You hub.

Quilter chief executive, Paul Feeney, said: “It is more important than ever for us to take care of our mental health and at Quilter we want to make sure that every financial adviser, no matter the size of their firm, has the resources and support they need.

“By joining forces with Spill, I hope that we will be able to help the advice profession access the emotional and mental health support they need and deserve.”

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