Earlier this year HM Treasury published their 2019 Women in Finance Annual Review, as committed members of the Charter, we are encouraged to see further signs of progress in embracing and improving diversity. We have produced this infographic available for downloading which brings out the key points of the Annual Review.

In the second in a series of articles with Peer-To-Peer Finance News, Campbell & Fletcher Recruitments managing director Tracy Fletcher has explained the need for companies to rethink their recruitment strategies to fully benefit from a diverse workforce. 

It has been long debated the effect of gender diversity on business.  A diverse team is proven to develop more innovative ideas and greater creativity due in part to the differing perspectives and life experiences.
According to McKinsey, the most gender diverse companies are 21% more likely to experience higher than average profitability, and in fact further reports shows that in having women as part of the “C” suite board level posts boosts productivity.
Diversity – a signal for an attractive work environment for talent
Numerous studies have shown that employees in pro-diversity regions, such as the United Kingdom and Western Europe prefer a diverse work environment. In fact, the employee reference site Glassdoor found that 67% of job seekers overall look at workforce diversity when evaluating a job offer. Another survey found that 61% of women look at the gender diversity of their possible new employer’s leadership team. In simple terms the research says the most talented individuals go to places that have a stong gender diversity policy in place.
The recent HM Treasury Women in Finance Charter Annual Review 2019 stated that nearly 62% of its signatories increased the proportion of women in senior management during 2019, which equates to an additional 2000 women joining the ranks of senior management.

“We are pleased to report that, for the second year running, we have seen an increase in female representation at senior management level. Our Focus now is to continue to optimise our recruitment, development and retention activities.” – Charles Stanley

Driving change through recruitment
The Women in Finance Charter, which Campbell & Fletcher Recruitment are proud to be members of, allows its signatories to choose their own targets based on their own strategy for improving gender diversity. All 187 signatories reported they were on target to meet their top three targets and continue to improve year-on-year.
We know from working with many companies who are part of the Women in Finance Charter that they are looking at new ideas with regards to recruitment, including ensuring diverse interview panels, complete diversity during the long-list and short-list stages, alongside the use of Blind CV’s and the effective training of management in gender diversity.

“There is no silver bullet, therefore having a robust plan and understanding the compound nature of its component parts has proven essential, as is measuring its impact.” – RBS Group

One of the most innovative approaches is being led by Zurich Insurance who have made all of their vacancies available part-time or as a job-share; many others are also adding an ‘always happy to talk flexible working’ tagline to their adverts. These particularly are targeted towards encouraging women back in the sector after a career break.

“As a banking professional I have experienced first-hand some of the struggles women face trying to advance their careers within Financial Services as well as appreciating the difficulties faced as an employer committed to supporting an equitable diversity strategy. We are ideally placed to support our clients’ individual needs and can offer meaningful and practical advice as to how a company can improve its own performance.” – Tracy Fletcher – Campbell & Fletcher Recruitment

Campbell & Fletcher “Passionate about supporting women to fulfil their career potential”
As part of our own targets for Women In Finance Charter, we are fully committed to closing the diversity gap. We have committed to providing clients with a diverse shortlist of candidates with a target of at least 30% of these applicants to be female, alongside educating both new and old clients about the importance of gender diversity.
In January 2020, we announced that we had chosen SmartWorks as our chosen charity for 2020. SmartWorks assists women from a range of different backgrounds and age groups back into employment by providing tailored interview coaching alongside appropriate clothing and accessories.

Campbell & Fletcher Recruitment work across the United Kingdom sourcing the highest equality talent in the banking and financial services industries. If you would like to discuss developing or progressing a gender diversity recruitment programme then please contact one of our team on 0161 932 1722. 
Information and data used in this article has been sourced from McKinsey, Glassdoor and also the HM Treasury Women in Finance Annual Review 2019