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Partnership announcement | Oliver James & Deedbees

Partnership announcement | Oliver James & Deedbees

24 May 2021

by Steph Teece

As part of our Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) strategy, we are focusing on social mobility and have just announced our partnership with not-for-profit Deedbees, representing our continued commitment and effort to help bridge the gap of underrepresentation in the insurance industry.

As a business we recognise the duty of care we have to help shape and break down social issues, particularly around in-balance in the sectors we operate in, providing opportunities for anyone regardless of their characteristics.

By supporting the Deedbees community we hope to increase the representation and future-proof the talent in the insurance industry, helping to achieve a better balance and greater social mobility.

We will be working with Deedbees to provide their members with one-to-one flexible mentoring, providing beneficiaries with advice and expertise to help many aspects of their career.

One of Deedbees founders, Sandra Hoac, provides more insight into the work Deedbees undertakes and what our partnership means for the insurance industry…

What is Deedbees?

Deedbees is a not-for-profit who supports young people from disadvantaged communities to gain access to (often out-of-reach) networks of skilled professionals for career advice and support.

By offering members one-to-one flexible mentoring through 1-hour sessions, we give our community access to opportunities they might not have had otherwise. We strive to remove barriers and empower young people to build their careers and confidence to achieve upward social mobility.

Why was Deedbees launched and how does it work?

Deedbees was launched when we saw a gap in the traditional volunteering market. We have individuals where even one conversation with a skilled professional can have a life-changing impact. However, we noticed that the barriers to formal volunteering (rigid timetables and long-term commitments) were excluding many experienced professionals from sharing their knowledge.

Deedbees was built to leverage our own high-quality networks to remove both these barriers through a seamless process. With Deedbees, you don't need to meet a specific schedule or make a long-term commitment to volunteer. You can provide impactful mentorship (even once-off) when it suits you.

“Helper Bees” (volunteers) are matched with “Community Bees” (beneficiaries) based on skills and support needed. After a new member fills in a short registration form, we match them with a Helper Bee, set up the virtual call, and provide our Helper Bees with short guidelines, tips, and exercises to get them started. Many of our members have their first session within a few days of registering.

Why is Deedbees targeted towards young people?

Youth unemployment is almost three times the UK’s national average, hitting young people from disadvantaged communities the hardest.

One of the key barriers is that young people are often unaware of the skills they need or what employers are looking for. Another is lack of work experience. Young people understand the value of it, but when starting out, especially in today’s competitive market, find it hard to secure work experience.

What does the partnership with Oliver James mean and what can people expect?

We are especially excited about our partnership with Oliver James. As recruiters, they have exceptional insight into what is required for a young person to secure a corporate role. Additionally, they are in a position to boost diverse representation within the insurance industry and make the sector an attractive career option for young professionals.

Most of our Community Bees look for support with CV writing and interview preparation, and we believe that recruiters are among the best placed to offer support.

For Community Bees, this partnership means access to even more high-quality Helper Bee mentors.

How can someone become a Community or Helper Bee?

Deedbees welcomes skilled professionals from any background to become a mentor and help spread good deeds every day. As a mentor, you can dedicate as many or as few hours as you’d like and still have an impact.

To become part of our Hive of volunteers, simply register on our website or contact us via email at

To stay up to date on all things Oliver James and Deedbees, follow our LinkedIn and Instagram pages: Oliver James - LinkedIn / Instagram, Deedbees - LinkedIn / Instagram.

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