Position against target
When we signed up for the charter in July 2020, we had 40% female representation within senior management. As of 1 September 2021, we had 33%. Based upon the size of our team of senior managers, the achievement of our target would equate to requiring 2-3 more women within this cohort, something we believe to be on track by December 2023.
Our plans for the future
The slight reduction in our position against target was due to one female senior manager deciding to move on to a new opportunity and the recruitment of a male non-executive director to our Board.
We strongly support the pledge for gender equality, and value inclusion and diversity as being an integral part of our strategy. We have put in place a number of initiatives to support our progress including those relating to succession planning, recruitment and flexible working.
In line with this strong support, during 2021, we have appointed a new Director of Lending who is an integral part of the Society’s executive team. As a highly experienced senior manager at the Society, Helen Wainwright was promoted internally to lead our mortgage sales, products and marketing teams.
In further support of enhancing gender diversity, we have reviewed our recruitment processes to make sure that we are fully inclusive and actively promote considering flexible working within our Society – something which many of our colleagues now do.
In addition, during the pandemic, we have robustly supported the physical and mental health and wellbeing of our staff – something that has been recognised by the CIPD within their prestigious awards. During this time, we have provided staff with 128.5 days of paid leave to support them with their caring responsibilities (100% of these days were for female staff) and 1718 days of uncapped paid leave for those colleagues that have been impacted by covid-19 (86.8% of these days were for female staff). Given the unprecedented nature of the last 18 months, we take pride in the support that we have provided to all our staff in ensuring that they have not been financially impacted.
We know that there is more to do and will continue to put the diversity of people, thought and outlook within our teams at the heart of our business strategy. We are proud of what we have achieved since joining the Charter and are committed to making further progress and reporting on it in a clear and transparent manner.