72 firms sign up to new City bonus charter

Female executive
By Eleanor O'Neill, CA Today

11 July 2016

EY and PwC UK are among 72 financial services firms that have so far signed a new charter promoting gender diversity at senior employment levels.

The Women in Finance Charter sets out a commitment within firms to link the remuneration packages of their executive teams to gender diversity targets.

Companies including Aviva, Barclays, HSBC and Mastercard are leading the charge of pledges coming from across the financial sector. Accountancy firms, insurers, retail banks, asset managers, mutuals and specialist industries like FinTech are all represented.

HM Treasury, the Financial Conduct Authority and some financial services trade bodies are similarly leading by example.

In addition to the changes to bonuses, the charter also requires signatories to implement the following:

  • Internal targets for gender diversity in their senior management.
  • Annually published progress reports.
  • The appointment of a senior executive responsible for gender diversity and inclusion.

These commitments are based on the recommendations set out in Jayne-Anne Gadhia’s Review into the representation of women in financial services.

She said: "I am convinced that the large number, as well as the diversity of firms who have signed the charter, marks a significant turning-point in the battle for a more balanced and fair industry.

"It demonstrates that a growing number of Chief Executives and Boards within the sector are taking the issue seriously and recognise the strong link between greater gender balance and improved productivity and performance."

A report by Glassdoor in May placed the UK 11th of 18 European countries assessed for gender equality in the workplace.

Kevin Ellis, Chairman and Senior Partner at PwC, said: "We are proud to have signed the charter and support the focus and accountability it will bring to help change the gender balance in financial organisations.

"We are committed to equality in the workplace and see diversity as a business imperative – it leads to better business decisions and creates an environment where everyone can reach their full potential."

EY this week announced the appointment of their first female Head of Financial Services in Scotland, Sue Dawe.

She said: “Organisations that live and breathe diversity and inclusion know the positive impact it has on business performance; it delivers competitive advantage.

"Creating an inclusive environment where everyone can achieve their potential remains firmly front and centre of our business strategy.”


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