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Our people

As a single organisation, we continue to strive to be an inclusive and empowering place to work globally, where our people can thrive.

Our culture

Key to everyone’s success and growth is our culture. We aim to bring our people together globally through a set of shared values and behaviours, underpinned by equality, diversity, inclusion and belonging. Our four values – responsibility, innovation, collaboration and empowerment – are central to creating a productive, inclusive workplace. These were launched in September 2021 and sit alongside our employee value proposition – Pursuing Potential – which we launched in April. Pursuing Potential sets out our promise as an employer and why people choose to work for us. It is about being passionate about making progress in whatever form that takes, whether it is being more effective, working better together or earning a promotion.

Our group print and operations team won the top prize at the UK’s Business Culture Awards 2021 for delivering “a culture shift towards innovation and improvement”.

Sharing systems and locations

Bringing our teams together has required us to streamline the tools we use as well as consolidate our offices and warehousing. Around 6,500 people were migrated onto a shared email system with standardised addresses and onto a single HR system. In seven countries, we streamlined the number of offices and in India we consolidated seven of our warehouses into one.

“The diversity of our workforce contributes to our success. We value people for who they are, and are committed to equality, diversity, inclusion and belonging.”


Mandy Hill, Managing Director, Academic

Equality, diversity, inclusion and belonging

As a global organisation, serving customers and representing colleagues all over the world, diversity in all its forms is key to our success. We operate under the principle that all people should have an equal chance to grow, learn, contribute and advance.

Alongside a global equality, diversity, inclusion and belonging steering committee, we have 12 staff networks that champion our colleagues and learners. These aim to ensure all backgrounds are respected and valued in our workplaces, products, services and activities – from the diversity of our authors or the accessibility of our digital products or to considerations about the inclusivity of our content..

The murder of George Floyd two years ago marked a moment of reflection for many people globally about the experiences of Black people and racism. We continue to work through the anti- racism action plans agreed in response at the time. In May 2022, we gave colleagues in our UK and US offices a practical guide to interrupting racism and other forms of bias that mark and steer so many lives. Many of the approaches apply equally well in other scenarios where someone might feel excluded.

We proactively measure and report our gender pay gap data in the UK, with formal reporting led by our University. Our pay gap data captured in March 2021 and reported in March 2022 to align with our University, showed a gap of 18.9 percent in the Press and 8.2 percent in Assessment. This remains stable and below the UK average. Across the years that Assessment and the Press have reported on our respective gender pay gaps, we have made
considerable progress, with further positive progress impacted by Covid-19 and our reorganisation in this financial year. We have made a range of commitments to tackle the challenges that underpin our gender pay gaps, and have produced a single action plan in collaboration with our staff networks.

Our people - shared values
We aim to bring our people together globally through a set of shared values and aspired behaviours

Global opportunities

Our commitment to developing people’s capabilities provides a breadth of opportunity both globally and locally, where individuals can move around. Career progression may look like ‘anything but a straight line.’ Our academies, guilds and career development networks support career paths, and this year we introduced a new platform which hosts 120,000 pieces of learning content.

For example, we recognise that to make effective digital products, we need to ready the workforce and have technology skills and capabilities across the organisation.

“Our digitally delivered products are making a difference and we are creating really interesting value out of using data to support teachers. Our technology team have a real impact for good in the world,” says Mark Maddocks, Chief Information Officer.

Teams have developed in-house guilds for staff, covering key capability areas including data, project management and product ownership. The academies provide a suite of learning that people can access, which also aligns with a career path.

“The calibre of our people is very high and we’re determined to give them the support they deserve. There’s a very strong team spirit, with people looking out for each other.”


Janet Scotcher, Chief People Officer

developer working
Our developers have global impact, working on products that aid understanding and help learners, teachers and researchers unlock their potential

A new Code of Ethics

During the year, a highly collaborative process engaging people from all across the organisation led to a new Code of Ethics to guide staff on how our values apply to various organisational activities, direct them towards relevant policies, and outline a framework for making sound decisions. All our colleagues are required to read and confirm acceptance of the Code on joining and will be required to re-read it annually throughout their employment.

Catie Sheret, General Counsel, explains: “It’s a really authentic document describing our ethos about ethics. It covers everything from anti-bribery to equality, diversity, inclusion and belonging, to educational integrity. It includes our speak-up policy, how we protect our intellectual property and data, and how we work with our suppliers. It’s far more than a tick-box exercise. It’s got real examples, which get updated annually to make sure it’s been brought to life so people can engage with it. I'm really proud of what the team did to create this."