Equality data Monitoring

Please update your Equality Data


Why does the University need my equality information?

To be the strongest University we can be, we need to attract, grow and engage with talented people from many different backgrounds, heritages and lifestyles, and support and develop them to reach their full potential. Our University is one where openness is not only possible, but is welcomed as a central part of who we are as an institution.

We believe that diversity in all its forms delivers greater impact in our research and teaching and enhances the experience of our students, which is reflected in our Strategic Plan and in The Power of People. To help us achieve this goal we need to build diverse teams, and embed equality and diversity values and practices in all we do.

What difference will sharing my information make?

Prior to the introduction of myJob in 2007, the University did not have a simple process for collecting equality data, and we did not collect sexual orientation or gender identity until 2010. Therefore, many members of staff have never been asked to provide this information.

Sharing your equality data is useful for a number of reasons. It is helpful for the University as it:

  • Allows us to build up a fuller picture of our staff profile in terms of E&D data, which will assist the University to consider areas of under-representation and develop actions to address this;
  • Enables positive action interventions and, by compiling trend data, helps inform future planning, and policies;
  • Helps us to focus on actions to promote positive relations between different equality groups;
  • Helps us assess the impact of proposed policies and initiatives on different equality groups;

Effective use of the data signals to staff and potential job applicants that the University is committed to equality and to supporting a diverse workforce. In turn, this contributes to the raising of our profile as an inclusive University.

The University is also bound by legal obligations: it is compulsory for the University to meet the reporting requirements of organisations such as HESA - Higher Education Statistics Agency, and under equality legislation, the University has a specific duty to monitor by disability, ethnicity and gender.

What will happen to my data?

Your data will be handled with the utmost confidentiality. All the information disclosed by staff is stored on the uBASE system and can only be accessed by yourself or selected/trained staff within Human Resources. 

All data is used only for statistical analysis and to help us identify areas of under-representation, and develop actions to address this. Individual names are excluded and the information is collated to avoid putting privacy at risk.

Collection of staff data also helps the University to comply with public sector duties placed on us by anti-discrimination legislation, and with Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) requirements. Data will be stored in line with the Data Protection Act 1998 (HM Government, 1998b).

Your line manager and HR will not be made aware of your disclosure data if you update this on myTeam, nor prompt discussions with yourself regarding any specific needs you may have.  If you wish to discuss this with your line manager, you can do so through a number of routes:

  •   SRDS
  •   promotion or progression
  •   sickness absence interview
  •   disability leave request
  •   request for flexible leave
  •   request for reasonable adjustments

How do I update my data?

It will only take a minute to update your data:

Simply login to MUSE via the link at the top of the University webpages, click on the My Services tab and myJob/myTeam/e-Recruitment.

Under “Personal Profile”, click My Equality Data. Make sure you click save your responses at the bottom left.

What are the benefits?

1. Activity to increase EO data over the past year has included Heads of Department, Athena SWAN Champions and our LGBT Senior Champion writing out to staff encouraging colleagues to update their data. As a result, sexual orientation disclosures in particular have increased from 18% in January 2014 to 48% in February 2016.

2. An increase in disclosure of sexual orientation and gender identity was important information in the creation of our LGBT Allies campaign, Open@TUOS, which helps all staff create an open and inclusive environment for LGBT colleagues and students. This has had a significant impact on our LGBT colleagues and contributed to our standing as a Stonewall Top 100 organisation.

3. Through analysis of disclosed data on ethnicity, we have identified a similar pattern in progression for BME academics as exists for female academics. This data is helping us consider actions to address this, such as setting up a BME staff network, and mentoring for BME academics.

4. Disclosing a disability to your line manager will prompt a discussion about what workplace support and reasonable adjustments can be put in place to enable you to continue doing your job. Even if you do not require any reasonable adjustments at this time, it is useful to raise it with your manager, to open up a channel for ongoing dialogue and communication, so if any support is needed in the future, you can work positively together on this.
It is important to note that filling in your equality information on myJob will not alert your manager to your disability.

5. As an employer, the University is committed to attracting, growing and engaging with talented people from diverse backgrounds at every level. We think it is extremely important that people feel able to bring their whole selves to work, and aim to create an inclusive, supportive and welcoming environment where people feel able to be open, leading to a more positive working experience.

Examples of disclosing information in practice

Example 1: A member of staff updates myJob to disclose they have a disability

This information cannot be seen by an individual’s line manager, and there is no notification that the record has been changed to line managers or HR. This information is only used as part of anonymous reporting.

Example 2: A member of staff discloses a disability to their line manager

A line manager should have a conversation about any current or potential impact of the individual’s disability that they need to (or might need to) know about, in order to accommodate any reasonable adjustments. The line manager may also seek advice from Human Resources at this point. In terms of recording the information, the only recording of disability a line manager can do is to record any sickness absence (via myTeam) that is related to an individual’s disability. 

The line manager should also suggest that the member of staff updates the information on myJob, to help with overall University disclosure rates, making it clear that the data recorded via myJob will only ever be used anonymously. The line manager cannot do this themselves.

If the individual has been referred to Occupational Health, reports will be returned to the person who referred them (usually the line manager, but HR can refer as well), and anyone named as authorised to receive it (the manager will normally name the HR Adviser). Any reports received by HR will be attached to the individual’s staff record and coded as a confidential record only.

Example 3: A member of staff discloses a disability to Human Resources

If an individual discloses a disability to HR, a conversation would take place to establish whether there are any risks, issues or concerns that need to be addressed. The HR colleague would make a judgement on whether to inform the individual’s manager, and would only do so where necessary. For instance, if it is felt there is something the manager needs to know, (so they can understand the issues, consider reasonable adjustments, and the University can exercise their duty of care, etc.), it will be explained to the member of staff that their manager will be informed confidentially. In this case, only the minimal amount of information will be shared as necessary. If it is felt that the manager does not need to know, the individual will be encouraged to be open with their manager, however the ultimate decision lies with them.

The individual will be encouraged to update their personal data in myJob. A file note will be made that the individual has disclosed a disability to their employer, in case it needs to be referred to in future, but this would not be stored on uBASE.

Chair of the Staff & Disability Network, Mark Morley says:
"I have found it beneficial declaring my disability to my Line Manager and my Department. It has improved my working life not having to 'hide' a part of who I am, and I feel more secure in myself. As the Chair of the S&DN I also understand that declaring has to be a personal decision that has to be right for you as an individual."

For further information on monitoring and disclosure, please see our Frequently Asked Questions section.

To find out more about our inclusion work, contact the HR team at hrequality@sheffield.ac.uk, or on x22467.

The University of Sheffield is committed to achieving excellence through inclusion.