On 13 November the Hampton-Alexander Review – an independent review body which builds on the work of the Davies Review to increase the number of women on FTSE 350 boards - has launched its penultimate report. It highlights the strongest year of progress for women on boards but also that companies need to pick up the pace if the target of 33% of women in senior leadership positions in FTSE 350 companies is to be reached by the end of 2020.
Main findings include:
- The FTSE 100 is on track to reach the 33% target for women on boards ahead of the 2020 deadline
- The FTSE 250 made strong gains during the year and with sustained effort, will also meet the 2020 deadline
- Out of the FTSE 350 there are only two all-male boards remaining
- A step-change is needed for senior leadership roles below board level: 50% of all appointments next year need to go to women, or the 2020 target will not be met.
CBI Director-General, Carolyn Fairbairn, said:
“It’s particularly good news that the target of women holding a third of board positions is likely to be met ahead of schedule. But if all male boards are to become a thing of the past, firms must not take their foot of the pedal.
“While firms are speeding ahead in the boardroom, they are making less progress on the executive pipeline. We are still seeing too few women in senior leadership positions, whether as CEO or running divisions.
“Heading into 2020, all firms should ensure they have diverse shortlists and that they’re doing everything possible to support people from all walks of life in their careers, from ground floor to boardroom."