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Our people and culture

Capita has over 63,000 talented, committed and engaged employees, essential to delivering business critical services and solutions across all our markets.

Their skills, knowledge, attitude and creativity ensure we continue to deliver great service and positive outcomes for our clients. 2017 has been a challenging year with businesses being restructured and disposed of. During these periods of change, we worked hard to ensure those affected were informed, involved and communicated to before and during the process.



The challenges


The UK government’s Hampton-Alexander Review 2017 details that “Robust action is needed now if we are to meet the 33% target for women in senior leadership positions by 2020” [1]


Another recent government report found that 76% of employers who invest in apprentices say that productivity has improved and 75% reported that apprenticeships improved the quality of their product or service[2].


Advanced Wellbeing Research Centre (AWRC) in Sheffield has discovered a definitive link between wellbeing and productivity.[3]



How we tackle these challenges

Employee engagement

Improving our culture and engagement with employees at all levels has been an important part of the change journey we have started, In 2017, we conducted three “pulse” surveys to gauge our employees’ motivation and engagement. Participation and sentiment improved steadily over the year, with a positive view in individual businesses of Capita as a good place to work. It also highlighted the need for greater career opportunities and personal development.

The McKinsey OHI (Organisational Health Index) culture and organisation health survey, undertaken in December 2017 after the arrival of our new CEO, has given us a deeper dive into our company and employees views. As we refresh the strategy and structure we will use the lessons from this deeper assessment as a foundation to help define the culture and leadership style we need to grow in the future.

Career development

Access to career opportunities is an important part of the benefit of working for Capita, with opportunities available to all employees, irrespective of how they joined Capita. The extensive range of roles, businesses, sectors and locations provides career possibilities most other businesses cannot offer.

In 2017 we made it easier for hiring managers to post their open roles internally and simplified the internal recruiting process therefore supporting greater internal mobility. We also launched a dedicated talent hub which profiles all the career opportunities across Capita to our employees. With most jobs now being made available to internal applicants, a new communication campaign has been launched, encouraging employees to 'look closer, go further' to find their next role with us.

Internal mobility rates have improved since we made these changes, with internal applicants now filling 22% of roles, up from 10% at the start of the year. And engagement data on career development has improved this year, with now over 60% saying that they are positive about their opportunities at Capita.

Learning and development

Capita has continued to invest in ensuring our employees have the skills they need to do well. In the year we invested £14m in training (2016: £13.9m). With the introduction of the apprenticeship levy we also have a new focus on creating development opportunities for our employees who are starting their career journey. During the year we have 172 apprentices working across the Group.

2017 also saw a deeper focus on leadership capabilities, in particular the importance of visible leadership during periods challenging f under performance. A new standard for leaders has been introduced, making it clear that our best leaders are not only focusing on the financial and commercial performance of their business, but also show leadership in building partnerships of trust with clients, create motivated and high-performing teams, consistently demonstrate courageous judgement, and demonstrate visible leadership by standing up and leading for the future. These Leadership Hallmarks are being enshrined now in recruitment, assessment, development, and rewards for leaders.

Attraction and retention

We recruit over 10,000 people into Capita every year, and our ability to attract the skilled workforce we need to serve our clients well is critical to our success. Particularly in the roles where we recruit many people into similar roles, such as customer management, we have been increasingly innovative in our approach to attracting great people. Equally important is our ability to recruit great talent at the most senior levels of the organisation, and in 2017 we have recruited executive talent from leading organisations from sectors as diverse as telecoms, oil and gas, software and financial services.

Despite the challenges Capita has faced, overall employee retention rates marginally improved to 79% (2016: 78%) as management teams across our businesses have increased their focus on employee engagement. Our sharpened focus on career development is also a factor, and multiple communications initiatives to ensure employees hear the information they need and feel part of a successful business. Retention will continue to be an area of risk for Capita as its embarks on its transformation programme, and this is a priority for our Head of Talent [and for the new Chief People Officer who joins Capita later in the year].


Having a diverse workforce brings fresh perspectives and helps us to create truly innovative solutions that benefit our clients and help improve our own market competitiveness. We are committed to developing an inclusive culture that reflects the diversity of our clients, their customers and the communities in which we work.

Capita’s employee group is diverse. Walk around any of our contact centres, or visit any of our offices across the UK and overseas, and you will appreciate just how diverse our employee base is. And we are proud of the fact that across Capita the gender mix is evenly balanced.

However, we recognise that with several recent senior leader departures and business disposals, we need to redouble our efforts to reflect our employee diversity at senior levels. Steps are now being taken to support female leaders rising through our organisation, and ensuring our culture supports our best leaders across the full spectrum of our diverse workforce. Our female leaders have come together to drive some sharper focus on diversity, including more emphasis on effective mentoring of female colleagues, encouraging formal and informal networking, improving recruitment practices, and ensuring our policies reflect the needs of a diverse workforce.

A greater push during the second half of 2017 to ensure that recruitment shortlists include diverse candidates is starting to show an outcome, with senior female hires up at 32%. There is work to be done here, but Capita is committed to ensuring that our leaders represent the diversity of our business and the people who work here.

  • Male/female gender split 52% male / 48% female
  • Senior manager gender split 85% male / 15% female
  • Board gender split 78% male / 22% female

Gender balance and pay

Alongside the progress made on improving the focus on diversity across the Group, the UK Government's gender pay reporting requirements are providing us with a good baseline and evidence from which we can develop our diversity strategy further.

The overall gender pay differential within Capita was:

Difference between men and women

Mean pay differential


Median pay differential


*Data as at 5 April 2017

Analysis of the data behind our mean pay gap of 26.8%, shows us that the gap can be attributed to two key factors. The first is that there are more men in senior roles, including at board level, At the same time, there are more women than men in the roles attracting lower salaries.

We recognise that we have work to do to encourage more women into senior leadership roles and into technical roles. We are committed to improving opportunities for career progression for women into senior roles. Our support and membership of the 30% Club, which targets 30% of our board members to be female, reflects this commitment. 

Our key actions include:

Supporting career progression – our networking programme for senior female leaders, provides a forum for networking and exchanging ideas, helping us to develop best practice across the company. In addition, our 30% club membership will provide access to further cross-company and cross-sector mentoring opportunities, adding to existing informal mentoring and coaching.

Reviewing recruitment processes - we are reviewing our recruitment processes including language used in job descriptions and job adverts to ensure we can encourage and attract as diverse a range of candidates to all our roles, including more technical roles.

Succession planning - regular succession planning is being used to grow future talent across the company. This process will help us enhance the development and support we can offer those with high potential to take the next steps in their career.

More detail is disclosed in our Gender Pay Gap Report

Supporting people through change

So, we can help our clients be more efficient and meet future business requirements, as well as addressing immediate performance and financial challenges, it is sometimes necessary to reduce the headcount on a particular contract or in a business or to move roles to our offshore centres. Where this is the case, Capita takes a proactive approach in seeking alternative employment options for those affected employees in order to redeploy them into other areas of our business.

Where suitable opportunities are not available we are open and honest about the situation. We go through a full redundancy consultation process involving individuals and their recognised trade union and employee representatives. Consultation with our trade unions is key to securing the most appropriate outcomes for affected employees.

Where we divest a business, or are unsuccessful in renewing a contract, we take a similar proactive approach helping our employees during these uncertain times. As TUPE regulations apply to disposals of UK businesses and contract transfers we can provide assurance to affected employees that their roles will transfer to the new service provider or new owner. During the year we transferred out 5,000 employees under TUPE, the majority as the result of the disposal of Capita Asset Services and our specialist recruitment businesses. Maintaining employee morale and service levels and protecting a business when it is identified for sale is critical to protecting jobs and the asset being sold. We run a communications programme as part of the mergers and acquisitions process, working with the senior leadership teams to protect employees and business interests. This ensures a smooth transfer out for employees and protects the value Capita has created. Capita's experience in this area is extensive.

Health, safety and employee wellbeing

We recognise that fostering a healthy, motivated workforce and safe working environment is not just the right thing to do, it’s also good for business, reducing sickness absence and increasing retention rates. Our Capita-wide health and safety management system reduces the risks across our business ensuring that our people have a safe and comfortable working environment.

In 2017 our accident rate was 1.23 per 1,000 employees (2016: 1.41), showing a 13% reduction in reportable accidents.

We raise awareness of the importance of living a healthy work-life balance through campaigns like our ‘Step Challenge’ where we encourage our people to be active walking to and from work, walking to meetings or taking the stairs rather than the lift. We provide opportunities for flexible working (16% of our employees are part time) and have introduced technology to enable employees to work remotely.


Our commitments and metrics

We will provide a safe, inclusive and diverse workplace for our people ensuring they are listened to, rewarded appropriately and developed to be the best that they can be. 


18% employees from ethnic minorities

78% employee retention rate

70,000 employees



Future plans

As we embark on our transformation programme, our people are a top priority. After the arrival of our new CEO, we conducted an Organisational Health Index survey to get a more detailed picture of how our people feel about working for Capita and how we can drive ongoing improvement. This will inform the engagement planning for the coming year and provides a benchmark from where we can track progress. In light of our gender pay gap information, there will be a greater push to improve progression opportunities for women.


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