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A new report has revealed that there is a lack of career confidence among people from a lower socioeconomic background.

The report, compiled by Totaljobs and the Social Mobility Foundation, found that of those who started their first job in the last two years, only 50% from lower socioeconomic backgrounds said they were confident about eventually being able to do the job they want. When looking at those from a more privileged, professional background, this figure rises to 71%.

The findings show a growing gap in starting salary between those from different socioeconomic backgrounds. Those from lower socioeconomic backgrounds earn less than half of what their more privileged counterparts do in their first job after full-time education (£11,595 versus £23,457).

The research also found that people from professional backgrounds are 47% more likely to have benefited from family connections when securing their first job, with over half receiving financial support during the job-seeking process as well.

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Jon Wilson, CEO at Totaljobs, said, “Social mobility is a long-standing, complex issue and there are many barriers that exist for those from lower socioeconomic backgrounds. But limited family connections or the professions of someone’s parents should not impede their search for the right job.

“Businesses, now more than ever, need to implement a multi-pronged approach when it comes to boosting opportunity in the workplace, by reaching potential candidates in social mobility ‘cold spots’, engaging candidates with career advice and monitoring the diversity of their applications.”

Sarah Atkinson, CEO at the Social Mobility Foundation, added, “The stark reality is where you grew up and what your parents did still has an impact on your opportunities and your earning potential. Employers can play a huge role in improving social mobility in the UK.

“We urge firms of all sizes to take a look at the recommendations within this report and take their first steps to improving socio-economic background in the workplace.”

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