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Hampton Alexander review

United Kingdom

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United Kingdom

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The Hampton Alexander review aims to improve gender balance in FTSE boards and in FTSE leadership.

Key requirements

The review’s key recommendations (November 2016) are that companies should aim to achieve the targets of:

1) 33% representation of women on FTSE 350 boards by the end of 2020
2) 33% representation of women in FTSE 350 leadership roles (executive committees and direct reports to executive committees) by the end of 2020, and
3) FTSE 350 companies to increase the number of women in the roles of chair, senior independent director and executive director positions on boards of FTSE 350 companies
4) The fifth and final report into progress with the Hampton Alexander Review’s recommendations was published on 24 February 2021.

This states that:

1) women now hold 34.3% of FTSE 350 board positions (up from 30.6% in 2019). This exceeds the 33% target
2) there are no all-male boards in the FTSE 350 and only 16 out of the FTSE 350 have only one women as a director (so called 'one and done' companies)
3) women held 36.2% of FTSE 100 board positions (up from 32.4% in 2019), but 32 FTSE 100 companies had not yet achieved the 33% target.
4) women held 33.2% of FTSE 250 board positions (up from 29.6%), but 139 FTSE 250 companies had not yet achieved the 33% target.
5) the number of women in the combined executive committee and direct reports of FTSE 100 increased to 30.6% (from 28.6% in 2019) -the largest increase in women in leadership in four years- but only marginally increased in FTSE 250 to 28.5% (from 27.9% in 2019)
6) over a third of all Chair and Senior Independent Director roles are now occupied by women

But there is more work to do as:

1) almost one-third of the FTSE 100 haven't met the 33% target
2) too few women are CEOs, finance directors and Chairs
3) there are still several all-male executive committees and 'one and done' boards.

Some of Sir Philip Hampton's suggestions for next steps include:

1) companies should aim to have a woman in at least one of the four roles of Chair, CEO, SID and CFO, and investors should support such best practice
2) companies should publish a gender pay gap for their board and their executive committee.


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