FTSE 350 Firms Falling Short Of Women On Boards Targets?

FTSE 350 Firms Falling Short Of Women On Boards Targets?

Avoiding and dealing with sex discrimination should be something that happens throughout all levels of a company, but new research has revealed that there are some FTSE 350 firms that may yet be failing to hit their targets for having women in board positions.

Figures released by the Hampton-Alexander Review, which aims to make sure that talented women at the top of their fields are recognised, promoted and rewarded, show that while FTSE 100 firms are now on track to reach the target of 33 per cent of board positions going to women come the year 2020, some FTSE 350 companies are falling short.

At the moment, a quarter of FTSE 350 board positions are held by women, but there are still ten all-male boards. The review, which was launched back in 2016, set FTSE 350 businesses a target of having 33 per cent of all senior leadership and board positions held by women… but in order for FTSE 350 companies to meet this target, about 40 per cent of all appointments would have to go to women in the next two years.

Last month, the review revealed some of the reasons and explanations from FTSE bosses for not appointing women to board positions, showing that there are still some firms out there refusing to move with the times.

Chief executive of the Investment Association Chris Cummings commented on the findings, saying: “The dial has shifted: gender diversity is now front and centre of investors’ minds. Firms with a diverse management team and pipeline make better decisions, so this is a business-critical issue. Companies must demonstrate that they have diverse management teams or have concrete plans to increase diversity, or face possible shareholder revolt.”

How to deal with sex discrimination in the workplace

The Equality Act 2010 makes it illegal for any employer to discriminate against members of staff because of their sex. Businesses should therefore make sure they have policies in place to prevent discrimination in recruitment and selection, selection for promotion, training and development, pay, terms and conditions, dismissal and selection for redundancy.

Direct discrimination

This is when someone is treated differently to other people because of their sex.

Indirect discrimination

This is when a workplace rule or procedure is applied to everyone in the office but disadvantages those of a particular sex.

Harassment

This can be broken down into three types – unwanted conduct, unwanted conduct of a sexual nature (also known as sexual harassment) and less favourable treatment of someone because they’ve either been the victim of sexual harassment or because they have rejected it.

Employers, managers, HR, employees and trade union representatives need to know what sex discrimination is and how it happens, as well as their rights and responsibilities, policies for preventing discrimination and just what actions and behaviour are unacceptable.

Make sure that all training is provided for employees in order to develop their awareness and understanding of one another. Get in touch with us today to find out more.