More than a third (34.3%) of FTSE 350 board positions are now held by women, with the number of women on boards increasing by 50% over the last 5 years, data released today (Wednesday 24 February) shows, representing a dramatic shift in representation at the very highest levels of British business.
The data has been published in the final report from the government-backed Hampton-Alexander Review, which was launched in 2016 to encourage UK-listed companies to appoint more women to their boards and into senior leadership positions.
While men still dominate in the upper ranks of the UK’s top firms, in 5 years the Review has seen remarkable progress among FTSE companies. In total, 220 of the FTSE 350 companies now meet the Hampton-Alexander target of having at least 33% of their board positions held by women – with the figure having quadrupled from just 53 in 2015, and there are no longer any all-male boards in the FTSE 350.
The figures also show an increase in women in wider senior leadership roles, demonstrating that Hampton-Alexander’s top-down approach – with boardrooms setting the standards for women’s representation across the company – is providing pathways to success for women and ultimately supporting British business to strengthen leadership with new ideas and diverse perspectives that come from more women in senior positions.
|Data||Oct 2015||Jan 2021|
|Number of women on boards in FTSE 350||682||1,026|
|Representation of women on boards in FTSE 350 (as a %)||21.9%||34.3%|
|Number of all-male boards in FTSE 350||15||0|
|Number of companies with 33% women on boards in FTSE 350||53||220|
|Number of boards with only one woman (One & Done)||116||16|
|Representation of women in leadership roles in FTSE 350 (as a %)||24.5% (in 2017,
when data collection began)
The FTSE 250 reached the Hampton-Alexander Review’s final target of women making up 33% of boards in December 2020, following the FTSE 100 and FTSE 350, which achieved the milestone in February and September 2020 respectively, highlighting the success of the government’s voluntary, business-led approach in addressing the exclusion of women from the top of FTSE companies.