Policy paper

Social Mobility Business Compact: champion tier

Updated 12 January 2016

The Social Mobility Business Compact asks employers to open their doors to people from all walks of life, regardless of their background.

About the champion tier

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) introduced the champion tier of the compact in 2014. The champion tier is for signatories that wanted to publicly commit to lead the way on improving social mobility.

Champion organisations

Following a competitive process, businesses were selected to become compact champions. These businesses span the housing, care, professional and legal service sectors.

The champion businesses are:

In November 2015 Co-operative Food decided to withdraw from the champion tier of the compact. They remain committed to meeting the champion standard over the longer term but their current focus is on a comprehensive 3 year programme to rebuild the Co-op.

Role of the champion tier

Champion organisations have committed to meet a more stretching set of criteria developed by BIS and the Social Mobility and Child Poverty Commission. These commitments cover outreach, work placements, recruitment, monitoring and evaluation and leadership.

These commitments include:

  • widening the geographical availability of opportunities they offer
  • providing well-structured non-graduate entry routes
  • considering grades and academic achievement in the context of the school or college attended when recruiting
  • evaluating the effectiveness of their interventions and processes
  • monitoring and evaluating the socio-economic background of their workforce and publish that data
  • being an advocate for social mobility


Between January and December 2015, champion businesses took action to fulfil the commitment they made when they were appointed in November 2014. Their progress was monitored throughout and in March 2016 all 11 champion organisations received confirmation that they had met the required standard.

These businesses have not just implemented a series of commitments, they have embedded social mobility as an important part of their organisational strategy and ethos.