iMatter Survey 2022: demographic data exploration

Independent report by Webropol providing detailed information and analysis of staff experience in health and social care across Scotland, broken down by protected characteristics (as stated in Equality Act 2010). This report compiles data from the 2021 and 2022 iMatter survey.

Demographic Profile and Trend

Demographic Profile

Overview of Demographic Profile of Staff

Note: Percentages shown are based on those staff answering each relevant question.

  • There are staff from across the age spectrum, with the most prevalent age group being 45 – 54 years (29% of staff)
  • Four out of five staff working in Health and Social Care who took part in iMatter 2022 are female (80%) and one in five (20%) are male
  • 95% think of themselves as heterosexual/straight, with small minorities describing themselves as gay, lesbian, bisexual or self-describe.
  • Less than 1% of staff taking part in iMatter consider themselves as Trans or with a Trans history. This is in line with the estimate of 0.5% of adults (almost 24,000) across the Scottish population (Source: National Care Service: equality evidence review, June 2022).
  • 4% of staff have taken maternity/paternity leave in the preceding 12 months
  • 56% of staff are married or in a civil partnership, while 30% have never been married or in a civil partnership
  • 6% of staff responding to iMatter consider themselves disabled. Conditions experienced include ones affecting both physical and/or mental health.
  • Over half of staff say they have no religion. Church of Scotland and Roman Catholic are the two most prevalent religions.
  • White is the most prevalent ethnicity (96%) and within that 88% are Scottish and 10% are other British White.
Demographic Characteristic Percentage
What was your age at your last birthday?
Under 25 years 4%
25-34 years 18%
35-44 years 24%
45-54 years 29%
55-64 years 23%
65+ years 2%
What is your sex?
Male 20%
Female 80%
Which of the following best describes your sexual orientation?
Straight/Heterosexual 95%
Gay or Lesbian 3%
Bisexual 2%
Prefer to self-describe1 1%
Do you consider yourself to be trans, or have a trans history?
Yes, I identify as transgender2 <1%
No, I do not identify as transgender 100%
Have you been on maternity/parental or shared parental leave in the past 12 months?
Yes 4%
No 96%


1. Those who prefer to self-describe are most likely to describe themselves as "pansexual", "asexual". Or "queer"

2. Those who say they identify as transgender are most likely to describe themselves as "Non Binary" in the open responses.

Demographic Characteristic Percentage
What is your legal marital or registered civil partnership status?
Married 55%
Never married and never in civil partnership 30%
Divorced / dissolved 9%
Separated 3%
Widowed / surviving partner from civil partnership 2%
In a registered civil partnership 1%
Do you consider yourself to be disabled within the definition of the Equality Act 2010?
Yes 6%
No 94%
Do you have any of the following, which have lasted, or are expected to last, at least 12 months?3
Long-term illness, disease or condition 13%
Mental health condition 9%
Deafness or partial hearing loss 4%
Physical disability 4%
Other condition 4%
Learning difficulty 2%
Blindness or partial sight loss 1%
Learning disability 1%
Full or partial loss of voice or difficulty speaking <1%
Developmental disorder <1%
What religion, religious denomination or body do you belong to?
None 56%
Church of Scotland 22%
Roman Catholic 15%
Other Christian 5%
Muslim 1%
Hindu <1%
Buddhist <1%
Sikh <1%
Jewish <1%
Pagan <1%
Another religion or body4 1%


3. Individuals can give more than one response. 68% said they had 'No condition' and 18% did not answer the question

4. Other religions mentioned most in open responses are "Baptist", "Evangelical" and "Church of England"

Demographic Characteristic Percentage
What is your ethnic group?
White 96%
Mixed or multiple ethnic groups 1%
Asian, Scottish Asian or British Asian 2%
African, Scottish African or British African 1%
Caribbean or Black <1%
Another ethnic group 1%
Within White
Scottish 88%
Other British 10%
Irish 2%
Polish 1%
Gypsy/Traveller <1%
Roma <1%
Showman/Showwoman <1%
Another white ethnic group5 2%
Within Asian, Scottish Asian or British Asian
Pakistani, Scottish Pakistani or British Pakistani 20%
Indian, Scottish Indian or British Indian 46%
Bangladeshi, Scottish Bangladeshi or British Bangladeshi 2%
Chinese, Scottish Chinese or British Chinese 12%
Other6 20%
Within Another ethnic group
Arab, Scottish Arab or British Arab 33%
Other7 67%


5. Staff who are 'Other White' are from a wide range of countries from across the world

6. Filipino and Nepalese are the most frequently mentioned ethnicities within 'Other Asian'

7. 'Other ethnic groups mentioned are very varied including some also mentioned elsewere such as Filipino, South American (various), Asian, Middle Eastern etc.

Trend in Demographic Data

The demographic profile of staff completing iMatter 2022 have been compared to iMatter 2021. Comparisons to EMPS 2020 have not been made as the question wordings and answer options for many of the demographic characteristics differed. This, combined with the lower response rate and EMPS taking place during the Covid-19 pandemic, make it inappropriate to make direct comparisons between iMatter and EMPS demographics.

The vast majority of demographic attribute either do not differ from 2021 to 2022 or move only by plus or minus one percentage point. For reference all information is contained in Appendix 2. The demographic characteristics that have moved more than one percentage point are:

  • The percentage of staff who have never married or registered in a civil partnership, up 3 percentage points. This may be reflective of the general trend seen in the population as illustrated by the England Census 2021.*
  • The percentage of staff who say they have no religion and do not belong to a religious denomination or body has decreased by 2 percentage points. This shift in religious belief is in line with other published population data (ONS Data for England and Wales)* and may be linked to the Covid-19 pandemic.
  • There has been an increase of 2 percentage points in staff stating they have not taken maternity/parental leave in the last 12 months.

* Scottish 2022 Census data not available at the time of writing. English 2021 Census data is used as a proxy.

Other sources of background reading on the impact of Covid-a9 on religious believe can be seen at: COVID-19 and its effect on people's religious belief • City, University of London Faith and spirituality in the time of Covid - BBC News



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