Civil Service Workforce

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The main facts and figures show that:

  • in the 2011 Census, 86% of the population of England and Wales described themselves as White

  • as of 31 March 2016, 88.8% of civil servants were White, 5.8% were Asian, 3.1% were Black, 1.4% were Mixed, 0.3% were Chinese, and 0.5% were from the Other ethnic group

  • London had the highest percentage of staff that were Asian (16.3%), Black (11.8%), Mixed (3.0%), Chinese (0.7%) and from the Other ethnic group (1.2%), compared to all other regions in the UK

  • male civil servants were more likely to be White (90.1%) than female civil servants (87.8%)

  • Asian staff had the lowest median salary (£25,000), and were the only ethnic minority group (other than White minorities) to earn less than the median salary for all groups combined (£25,400)

  • 15.8% of staff aged 20 to 29 years were from ethnic minorities (other than White minorities), compared to 7.4% of those aged 60 to 64 years

Things you need to know

24% of civil servants didn’t report their ethnicity and weren’t included in the data.

The Annual Civil Service Employment Survey doesn’t include people working for:

  • the NHS
  • non-departmental public bodies
  • the Civil Service abroad
  • the Northern Ireland Civil Service, which supports the devolved government in Northern Ireland
  • central government in security posts

It doesn’t include people not on the payroll or not being paid during the time period covered, for example staff taking unpaid leave or contractors.

Senior civil servants

There are two types of senior civil servants – those with a grade of ‘Senior Civil Service level’ (or ‘SCS Level’), and those working for the Senior Civil Service.

This data measures SCS Level employees, which includes a number of health professionals, military personnel and senior diplomats who aren’t part of the Senior Civil Service.

As a result, these statistics may be different to those used for monitoring diversity of the Senior Civil Service.

What the data measures

This data measures the percentage of people working for the Civil Service from different ethnic groups. It also analyses this information by area, gender, age, seniority and pay.

Median pay is the middle pay in a range that has been ordered by size from lowest to highest.

The data includes Civil Service staff working in the UK as at 31 March 2016.

It was collected as part of the Annual Civil Service Employment Survey, which counts how many people are employed in the Civil Service, and how diverse the workforce is.

As of 31 March 2016, the total Civil Service workforce was 418,343 (316,792 full-time staff and 101,551 part-time).

The data includes the actual number of staff employed by the Civil Service (known as ‘headcount’) regardless of whether they’re full-time or part-time staff.

Data on pay has been calculated using each civil servant’s full-time equivalent (FTE) salary. For example, if someone works 2.5 days per week and earns £12,000, their FTE salary is £24,000.

The ethnic categories used in this data

For this data, the number of people from specific ethnic categories surveyed (the ‘sample size’) was too small to draw any firm conclusions when analysed by ethnicity and another factor (for example area or gender). Therefore, the data is broken down into the following 6 broad groups:

  • Asian/Asian British
  • Black/African/Caribbean/Black British
  • Chinese
  • Mixed/Multiple ethnic groups
  • White
  • Other ethnic group

Ethnic groups and how data on ethnicity is collected

Civil Service workforce by ethnicity

Percentage of civil service staff by ethnicity

Ethnicity %
Asian 5.8
Black 3.1
Chinese 0.3
Mixed 1.4
White 88.8
Other 0.5

Download table data (CSV) Source data (CSV)

Summary

This data shows that:

  • as of March 2016, 88.8% of civil servants were White

  • Asian staff represented the next largest group, at 5.8% of civil servants

  • Chinese staff were the smallest group, accounting for 0.3% of civil servants

Civil Service workforce by ethnicity and area

Percentage of staff by ethnicity and area

Region Asian Black Chinese Mixed Other White
% % % % % %
All Regions 5.8 3.1 0.3 1.4 0.5 88.8
North East 0.9 0.3 0.1 0.6 0.2 97.8
North West 3.2 0.8 0.2 1.1 0.3 94.3
Yorkshire and The Humber 5.4 1.2 0.2 1.1 0.4 91.8
East Midlands 8.2 1.9 0.1 1.3 0.3 88.2
West Midlands 11.8 3.8 0.1 1.4 0.5 82.4
East 4.6 2.1 0.3 1.4 0.6 90.9
London 16.3 11.8 0.7 3.0 1.2 67.0
South East 3.1 1.4 0.3 1.2 0.5 93.6
South West 1.2 0.8 0.2 1.0 0.4 96.4
Wales 0.8 0.4 0.2 0.8 0.3 97.5
Scotland 1.0 0.3 0.1 0.5 0.2 97.9
Northern Ireland 0.3 withheld to protect confidentiality withheld to protect confidentiality 0.3 withheld to protect confidentiality 99.3

Download table data (CSV) Source data (CSV)

Summary

This data shows that:

  • London had the highest percentage of staff who were Asian (16.3%), Black (11.8%), Mixed (3.0%), Chinese (0.7%) and from the Other ethnic group (1.2%), compared to all other regions in the UK

  • by comparison, 18.5% of the London population at the 2011 Census described themselves as Asian, 13.3% Black, 5.0% Mixed, and 3.4% from the Other ethnic group

  • Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland typically had the lowest percentage of staff from ethnic minorities (excluding White minorities)

  • the North East was the English region with the lowest percentage of staff who were Asian (0.9%), Black (0.3%) and Mixed (0.6%) – by comparison, in 2011, 95.3% of the population of the North East was White and 4.7% came from other ethnic groups

  • the regions with the highest percentage of Asian civil servants were London (at 16.3% of the workforce), the West Midlands (11.8%) and the East Midlands (8.2%)

Civil Service workforce by ethnicity and gender

Percentage of staff by ethnicity and gender

Ethnicity All Male Female
Asian 5.8 5.3 6.3
Black 3.1 2.4 3.7
Chinese 0.3 0.3 0.3
Mixed 1.4 1.3 1.5
White 88.8 90.1 87.8
Other 0.5 0.6 0.5

Download table data (CSV) Source data (CSV)

Summary

This data shows that:

  • as at 31 March 2016, 9 out of 10 male civil servants were White

  • the percentage of female staff was higher than males for Black staff (3.7% women, 2.4% men), Asian (6.3% women, 5.3% men) and Mixed (1.5% women, 1.3% men)

Civil Service workforce by ethnicity and age group

Percentage of staff by ethnicity and age group

Age Asian Black Chinese Mixed White Other
All Ages 5.8 3.1 0.3 1.4 88.8 0.5
Aged 16-19 7.2 0.0 0.0 2.9 89.9 withheld to protect confidentiality
Aged 20-29 9.5 2.7 0.4 2.6 84.2 0.5
Aged 30-39 8.5 2.7 0.4 1.9 85.9 0.6
Aged 40-49 5.9 3.7 0.3 1.3 88.4 0.5
Aged 50-59 3.6 3.3 0.2 1.0 91.4 0.5
Aged 60-64 4.0 1.9 0.2 0.7 92.5 0.6
Aged 65 & Over 6.7 2.1 0.2 0.7 89.7 0.7

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Summary

This data shows that:

  • 92.5% of staff aged 60 to 64 years were White (the highest percentage of White staff in any age group) – by comparison, 84.2% of staff aged 20 to 29 years were White (the lowest percentage)

  • the age group with the highest percentage of Asian staff was 20 to 29 years (9.5%)

  • the age group with the highest percentage of Black staff was 40 to 49 years (3.7%)

Civil Service workforce by ethnicity and grade

Percentage of staff by ethnicity and grade

Grade Asian Black Chinese Mixed White Other
Administrative officers and assistants 6.5 3.3 0.2 1.2 88.3 0.5
Executive officer 6.8 3.8 0.3 1.4 87.2 0.5
Senior and higher executive officer 4.9 2.7 0.3 1.5 90.1 0.5
Grades 6 & 7 3.8 1.6 0.3 1.7 91.8 0.7
Senior Civil Service 3.4 1.3 0.3 1.3 93.1 0.5

Download table data (CSV) Source data (CSV)

Summary

This data shows that:

  • Asian and Black staff made up 3.4% and 1.3% respectively of staff at Senior Civil Service grade (the highest grade), compared with 6.5% and 3.3% respectively of administrative officers and assistants (the most junior grade)

  • the executive officer grade (the second most junior grade) had the highest percentage of both Asian staff (6.8%) and Black staff (3.8%)

Civil servants' median pay by ethnicity and grade

Civil servants' median pay by ethnicity and grade

Grade All Groups Asian Black Chinese Mixed White Other
£ £ £ £ £ £ £
All Grades 25,400 25,000 26,500 27,200 27,000 25,600 28,000
Administrative officers and assistants 19,500 20,100 22,200 19,600 19,900 19,500 20,600
Executive officer 25,200 26,400 26,800 26,100 25,500 25,200 26,000
Senior and higher executive officer 33,800 33,900 34,400 35,300 34,300 33,700 35,100
Grades 6 & 7 54,500 54,500 55,300 53,700 55,000 54,500 55,400
Senior Civil Service 80,600 88,500 88,700 90,600 76,600 80,600 89,100

Download table data (CSV) Source data (CSV)

Summary

Median pay is the middle pay in a range of pay within each ethnic group that has been ordered by size from lowest to highest.

This data shows that:

  • as of 31 March 2016, the median pay for all civil servants was £25,400

  • median pay was lowest for Asian staff (£25,000) and highest for staff from the Other ethnic group (£28,000)

  • White staff had the lowest median pay at the 3 lowest grades (administrative officers and assistants, executive officers, and senior and higher executive officers) – perhaps because a lower percentage of White staff work in London, where pay rates are higher

  • at Senior Civil Service level, median pay was highest for Chinese staff (£90,600) and lowest for staff of Mixed ethnicity (£76,600)

Civil servants' median pay by ethnicity and area

Civil servants' median pay by ethnicity and region

Region All Groups Asian Black Chinese Mixed White Other
£ £ £ £ £ £ £
All Regions 25,400 25,000 26,500 27,200 27,000 25,600 28,000
North East 20,190 20,100 19,800 19,800 21,600 22,200 22,800
North West 23,200 19,800 20,200 20,200 22,400 23,500 23,500
Yorkshire and The Humber 24,700 20,300 23,200 23,200 23,400 25,200 28,100
East Midlands 24,000 19,800 21,100 22,300 22,400 24,400 23,900
West Midlands 24,200 20,300 22,400 23,800 22,400 25,000 24,400
East 25,300 23,200 25,900 30,800 25,500 25,900 27,000
London 33,000 27,800 27,300 31,700 31,200 36,700 30,400
South East 26,200 24,200 24,400 24,000 25,700 26,400 26,100
South West 28,300 28,000 25,100 30,400 29,200 29,200 30,000
Wales 23,600 22,200 21,700 23,400 23,500 24,300 22,200
Scotland 23,500 20,400 18,600 20,200 24,800 24,400 25,200
Northern Ireland 23,200 26,600 withheld to protect confidentiality withheld to protect confidentiality 23,600 23,200 withheld to protect confidentiality

Download table data (CSV) Source data (CSV)

Summary

Median pay is the middle pay in a range of pay within each ethnic group that has been ordered by size from lowest to highest.

This data shows that:

  • White staff had the highest median salaries in all English regions except the South West and the East – probably due to a higher percentage of staff in senior grades being White

  • in almost all cases, median salaries for different ethnic groups were highest in London – probably due to both ‘London weighting’ and the concentration of specialist and senior civil servants who tend to receive higher salaries

  • median salaries for most ethnic groups were lowest in the North East

Methodology

Methodology

All Civil Service departments are asked for details of all their employees on the payroll on a certain date in the year (currently 31st March). They are are also asked to provide leavers in the last 12 months. All Civil Service employees are included, so no weighting is required.

The grade categories, from senior to junior are:

  • Senior Civil Service (SCS)
  • grades 6 and 7
  • higher and senior executive officers
  • executive officers
  • administrative officers and assistants

Government departments use different ways of grading staff - some use numbers, some use pay bands, and others use descriptors (for example, Senior Policy Advisor). The concept of broad ‘responsibility levels’ is therefore used, in which departmental grades have been assigned to levels which are broadly equivalent in terms of pay and job weight.

Headcount statistics are based on the number of employees with an employment contract who are being paid by a Civil Service department. Employees can be permanent, on a fixed-term contract or employed on a casual basis.

Self-employed workers, contract workers and agency workers are excluded. Employees not on the payroll and not being paid as at 31 March 2016 are also excluded, for example, those on unpaid maternity leave, unpaid sick absence and career breaks.

Median gross salary includes basic pay (including consolidated performance pay) and pay-related allowances such as regional and skills allowances. It does not include bonuses.

Suppression rules and disclosure control

Values based on fewer than 5 responses have been suppressed.

‘Suppression’ means these figures have not been included in the data, to protect confidentiality and because the numbers involved are too small to draw any reliable conclusions.

Rounding

Total staff numbers are rounded to the nearest 10.

Pay data is rounded to the nearest £100.

Quality and methodology information

Data sources

Source

Type of data

Administrative data

Type of statistic

National Statistics

Publisher

Cabinet Office

Publication frequency

Yearly

Purpose of data source

The Annual Civil Service Employment Survey (ACSES) is carried out to measure the numbers employed in the Civil Service, and to measure diversity across the workforce.

Download the data

civil_service_flatfile - Spreadsheet (csv) 12 KB

This file contains the following: ethnicity, year, gender, geography, age group, median pay, grade