Appoint more women to the boardroom, businesses ar

Posted on Wednesday, March 30th, 2011 by

Leading companies should aim to have at least one in four female board members as part of ‘radical’ changes to increase the number of women at the top of business, according to a government-commissioned review. Former trade minister Lord Davies of Abersoch said that UK listed companies in the FTSE100 should have a minimum of 25% women members on the board by 2015. But while recommending companies to set intermediate targets in 2013 and announce their intentions publicly in the next six months, Lord Davies stopped short of insisting that formal quotas be introduced unless voluntary measure failed. ‘Over the past 25 years, the number of women in full-time employment has increased by more than a third and there have been many steps towards gender equality in the workplace, with flexible working and the Equal Pay Act. However, there is still a long way to go,’ said Lord Davies. ‘Currently 18 FTSE100 companies have no female directors at all and nearly half of all FTSE250 companies have no woman in the boardroom,’ he said. ‘Radical change is needed in the mindset of the business community,’ he added. ‘There is growing evidence to show that diverse boards are better boards, delivering financial out-performance and stock market growth.’ So far, there has been little reaction from the FTSE100 companies targeted in Lord Davies’s report.