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Board diversity progress slows

Australia’s top 200 companies have slowed in their progress towards achieving gender diversity at board-level positions, with the current statistics just whiskers away from the target.

Business Reporter 23 April 2019
— 1 minute read

The Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD) has released the latest gender diversity statistics of Australia’s ASX 200 companies, with female directors accounting for 29.5 per cent of all board positions as of 31 March 2019.

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The AICD had set a 30 per cent target to be achieved by 2018, but the latest statistics show that progress has stalled since the start of the year.

“At the beginning of this year, we expected to achieve our 30 per cent target imminently, but unfortunately, the overall percentage has fallen since the start of this year,” AICD managing director and chief executive officer Angus Armour said.

“I challenge all boards to look around their boardroom and ask if there is sufficient diversity of skills, experience and gender to effectively meet the demands of a challenging governance landscape.”

The year-to-date appointment rate of women sits at just 23 per cent, down from 47 per cent in the first two months of 2018.

The latest statistics reveal that there are still four companies with no women on their boards and 50 companies only have one female board member.   

“Far too many companies appear to think that diversity stops after the appointment of one woman,” Mr Armour said.

“Diverse boards help prevent groupthink, leading to better outcomes for shareholders, consumers, employees and the community. They promote greater innovation and improved bottom lines.”

Board diversity progress slows
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