Sky has announced a new target for improving diversity in its ranks. By 2025, the broadcaster is aiming for 20% of its employees in the UK and Ireland to be people of color, and specifically, Sky will work to ensure that 5% of those roles are filled by Black people. These targets will also apply to Sky’s leadership team of approximately 300 executives.
Today, 14.7% of Sky’s employees are people of color, and 2.7% are Black. On the leadership team, just 1% of current execs are Black, and 9% are people of color.
This new target announcement follows in the wake of Sky’s commitment in June 2020 to improve its diversity and inclusion efforts. At the time, the broadcaster pledged to invest US$13.7 million (£10 million) a year for three years to increase representation within its own ranks and to use its platform to highlight racial injustice. The company researched demographics in the local areas where it operates, and has formed its new goals based on that population data in an effort to be more representative of the communities it serves.
Sky’s progress will be measured annually and reported in its “Bigger Picture Impact Report.” Efforts to meet the target will include introducing a more inclusive recruitment process, improving retention and addressing the systemic barriers to access in the industry. Sky recently appointed Denise Peart as its first chief talent, diversity and inclusion officer and appointed several team members to its Diversity Advisory Council.
Sky’s work to address historic exclusion within the industry follows several similar announcements from broadcasters globally. BBC Studios Production announced last year that at least 20% of its workforce for all new series must come from a diverse background, while ViacomCBS Networks International rolled out a company-wide “No Diversity, No Commission” policy that requires all new international productions be made by a diverse team.
Sky has also been focused on building up its family-friendly offerings of late. The broadcaster commissioned a number of new original series last year, including Zodiak Kids’ live-action video editing series Ultimate Video Skills and low-tech art series Best Makes Ever!.