Top professions 'are becoming more socially exclusive'

22-04-2009

Top professions 'are becoming more socially exclusive'
Many of the leading professions in the country are almost a closed shop to certain people in society, a report has suggested.

The government's Panel on Fair Access to the Professions found that, in recent decades, those who have been independently schooled or who are from families that are better off are more likely to enjoy success in professions such as law, medicine, media, publishing, the civil service and banking.

"Bright children from middle class families as well as those from poorer backgrounds are missing out on top professional jobs," said Alan Milburn MP, who chairs the panel.

"Many professions are working hard to put this right but their efforts need to be intensified."

For example, it was found that those educated at independent schools dominate the workforces in over half of professional occupations - despite this group representing just seven per cent of society.

In contrast, fewer individuals from families with above-average income are entering the teaching, academic and cultural professions.

Concerned at the trend and determined to find a way round it, a spokesperson for ClickAJob points out that social connections seem to outweigh privileged standing.

"It might be an old tradition, but the 'school-tie network' still carries weight and influence," he points out.

"More often than ever, it's WHO you know that's important."

"Which means that canny professionals without the same background should look to compensate with their own connections to ensure they are competitive," he continues

"With networks like LinkedIn, most professional people can quickly establish significant contacts in key positions that any organisation would find invaluable," he explains.

"So if you're a Facebook junkie, start making it earn its keep - it could win your next job for you."

Related categories: Legal.


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