Why we've partnered with upReach and Women in Business and Finance

I’m Sanjay from the People and Talent Team at MarketFinance. My primary role is Talent Acquisition Lead where I help find the best people to build our vision of frictionless finance for small businesses. Equally important to me is my position as Chair of the Diversity, Equality and Inclusion (DEI) Committee.

We’re a business driven by our values: #AlwaysBeLearning, #MakeItHappen and #1Team1Dream. We believe in diversity, equality and inclusion for everyone at every level at MarketFinance and we want to build the best business for our team. Our goal is to continue evolving for our people and our community. This is why we set out to work with a couple of organisations that share the same vision of DEI as us. As a result, we are proud to partner with two incredible organisations: upReach and Women in Business and Finance (WIBF).

Partnering with upReach is quite personal for me, as it’s a platform I absolutely would have utilised if it was around when I was a student, and I know there are many people within the business who feel the same way. A large part of their focus is providing opportunities for people from low-income households, people who didn’t go to privileged schools, or people from more diverse and minority backgrounds.

As a business, we want to give back and invest in the next generation. This includes providing opportunities to students who are otherwise underserved by the employment systems or expectations in place for the finance and the fintech industry. To start with we’ll be providing mentorships from our team, but we’ll continue looking for other ways to contribute. I’m really excited to give students an opportunity to get a start in the industry, particularly because it’s often a place where who you know ends up being more important than what you know – no matter how hard you've worked. Change like this needs to start both at the top and the bottom.

Women in Banking and Finance (WIBF), established over 40 years ago, is a brilliant organisation focused on connecting its members with industry leaders and pushing change in these traditionally male-dominated fields. Although both finance and tech as industries have made some improvements on this front, there’s still a long way to go. We want to be partnered with the right organisation to help facilitate that change.

As the working world evolves, so do the expectations of candidates. It’s become quite common for fintech and finance candidates (and no doubt across other industries too) to find a lack of gender and racial diversity in the C-suite a deciding factor when applying for roles. This is why representation matters so much. If you have a variety of different faces at a senior level then progression feels achievable to more people and applying for a role is more appealing to a spread of candidates. It’s something we’re striving towards and something WIBF are constantly campaigning to change. What our partnership with WIBF will allow us to do is cultivate a more diverse pool of candidates through their members and networks as well as give our female employees the opportunity to be mentored.

Studies in the industry have always shown that having a more diverse board and wider business leads to more success overall. Recruitment consultancy, Thomas, found that the 43 most diverse public corporations were 24% more profitable than the S&P 500. We know there is work to do not only within Marketfinance but the wider FinTech industry, so this is just the beginning for us. We want to create a space in which people can feel safe and comfortable, driving both performance but also attracting more diverse talent into the business. We’re laying the foundations for the future of the company, for future employees and shaping the diversity of the workforce.

A little bit about our new partners…

🔶 upReach supports students from disadvantaged backgrounds across the UK to secure top jobs in competitive industries by offering a wide range of opportunities, activities and support to broaden their horizons.

🔷 Women in Banking and Finance connect members to a wide network of thought-leaders, business leaders and women at all stages of their career. Their mission is to get the industry to adopt new ideas and address structural barriers.