ASX 200 hits record 31.3% for women on boards. With one final all-male board yet to join the century

ASX 200 hits record 31.3% for women on boards. With one final all-male board yet to join the century

ASX

We’re not getting a huge amount of good news for women in business right now, but this latest data is worth celebrating and comes after years of scrutiny and hard work, particularly from groups like The 30% Club Australia.

The ASX 200 has hit a record for the proportion of women on boards, with women now occupying 31.3 per cent of such positions.

The record was recorded on 31 July 2020, and is up from the previous record of 30.7 per cent recorded last quarter.

And there’s just one remaining board with no women currently represented — that belongs to Silver Lake Resources. The invitation to join us in the current century is very much open.

But of course, there’s still plenty of work to do on board gender diversity. There are still 29 companies across the ASX 200 with just one female board director, and the larger boards still tend to do the “heavy lifting” when it comes to increasing the proportion of women on boards (as the below figures show).

The 30% Club Australia established a voluntary target of 30 per cent women on boards, with the help of the AICD five years ago. Back then, women made up just 20.6 per cent of ASX 200 directors.

GroupFemale directorship (as at 31 July 2020)
ASX 2035.1%
ASX 5033.5%
ASX 10032.5%
ASX 20031.3%
ASX 30029.3%
ASX All Ords25.4%

30% Club Australia Chair, Nicola Wakefield Evans, said she applauds the companies that had an underrepresentation of female directors for many years that have worked to rectify the problem.

But she warns against complacency. “Companies at the top of the ASX continue to lead the charge, with more than half of the ASX 100 now at more than 30 per cent women on their boards, and 28 boards comprised of more than 40 per cent women.

“At the same time, more than half the companies in the ASX 201-300 category have only one woman or none at all,” she said.

“There is no shortage of qualified, board-ready women in Australia. We look forward to working with stakeholders on our goal of achieving gender parity on boards and addressing systemic barriers to this change.”

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