Empowering Women in the Workplace

International Women's Day, this year held on the 8th March, is a day when gender diversity issues come to the forefront of public consciousness and fuel the conversation around gender representation in the workplace.

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Many companies are making an effort to combat gender bias in the workplace, with more than 75% of CEOs including gender equality in their top ten priorities. However figures from 2016 are still suggesting that women aren’t represented well - especially in higher levels of management.

  • Entry level = 46%
  • Managerial = 37%
  • Director = 33%
  • Vice President = 29%
  • Senior Vice President = 24%
  • C-Suite = 19%

Why is it important to have an equal balance?

  • A study conducted last year, states that having 30% of women in leadership positions actually adds 6% to a company's net profit margin.
  • Having women on boards also improves investor confidence, with investors starting to use gender equality data as part of their assessment for investments.
  • By excluding women from boards and certain job roles, companies are missing out on talented and knowledgeable candidates that could be a benefit to them. By including women, the talent pool doubles.
  • A study has proven that having a diverse group leads to better decisions. This is due to the range of life experiences and ideas.

WEP’s (Women’s Empowerment Principles)

The Women’s Empowerment Principles were developed collaboratively by the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) and the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC). They build on previous work from UN Women around the Calvert Principles, with the aim to come together to empower women and reach the goal of having a bigger impact on wider society.

They have created a set of 7 principles which provide guidance to companies on how to empower women in the workplace, marketplace and the community.

The WEP have recently released a GAP Analysis Tool which will allow companies to assess their performance and identify where they many need to improve to remove gender bias.

 

  1. Establish high-level corporate leadership for gender equality.
  2. Treat all women and men fairly at work – respect and support human rights and nondiscrimination.
  3. Ensure the health, safety and well-being of all women and men workers.
  4. Promote education, training and professional development for women.
  5. Implement enterprise development, supply chain and marketing practices that empower women.
  6. Promote equality through community initiatives and advocacy.
  7. Measure and publicly report on progress to achieve gender equality.

Companies should seek to clearly report on issues of diversity within their corporate communications. To understand how we can help you to provide clearer communications, and transparency on gender equality, please get in touch.