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Why is equality data monitoring important?

Ulster University recognises that its staff are drawn from a vast number of different backgrounds and walks of life, and that this diversity of backgrounds, heritages and lifestyles, as well as talents and ideas make us the best we can be.

By providing your personal equality data, you help the University, as your employer, to develop a culture that benefits and supports all staff and provides a positive working environment for everyone to contribute and thrive, bringing their whole selves to work.

Why monitor?

Monitoring is useful for several reasons, as it:

  • Allows the University to gain an overview of its workforce profile, benchmark itself against local and national statistics and identify any potential areas for improvement;
  • Enables positive action interventions (i.e. Athena SWAN charter, Race Equality Charter) and, by compiling trend data, helps inform future planning and policies;
  • Assists when planning the provision of services to meet the diverse requirements of staff (e.g. in establishing spaces for prayer or contemplation; or to develop LGBT+ initiatives);
  • Helps the University to focus on actions to promote positive relations between different equality groups;
  • Helps the University assess the impact of proposed policies and initiatives on different equality groups; and
  • Helps the University meet its legal obligations: it is compulsory for the University to meet the reporting requirements of organisations such as HESA (Higher Education Statistics Agency, Under Section 75 of the Northern Ireland Act (1998) and in line with other legislation, the University is required to gather staff data across all protected characteristics (Ulster University Equality Scheme).

Effective monitoring and use of the data also indicate to staff and potential job applicants that the University is committed to equality, to supporting a diverse workforce, and contributes to the raising of its profile as an inclusive University.

How do I update my personal equality data?

Personal equality data can be amended via the CoreHR Portal at

How is the information stored?

Your data will be handled with the utmost confidentiality.  All the information disclosed by staff is stored on the secure CoreHR system, in line with all Data Protection legislation and can only be accessed by yourself or selected staff within People & Culture.

What about data protection and privacy issues?

The University takes the security and integrity of all the personal data it holds very seriously.  All People & Culture staff are trained in and adhere to all Data Protection legislation in line with University policy.

To ensure that confidentiality is not undermined inadvertently, the University anonymises all data and never reports on small numbers where individuals could be identified (even for Freedom of Information requests).

The University is bound to comply with HESA obligations and Equality Commission for Northern Ireland reporting requirements, including monitoring of staff by recruitment and selection and progression. All information submitted to HESA is used in compliance with all Data Protection legislation.

Who has access to this information?

There are very strict laws to ensure the University protects your details and deals with it responsibly.  Only selected staff within People & Culture will have access to the data you disclose.

Everyone wants to work in an environment where difference is valued and respected.  It only takes 5 minutes to update your equality data, and this contributes to a valuable data set that we can use to help create a fully inclusive environment.

Please help by updating your data on the staff portal