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ICAEW’s target to improve management gender diversity

The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) is a signatory to HM Treasury’s Women in Finance Charter, which commits organisations to build a more balanced and fair industry. Firms that sign up to the Charter pledge to support the progression of women into senior roles in the financial services sector.

HM Treasury's Women in Finance CharterThe Women in Finance Charter

More than 270 organisations covering banks, insurance companies, investment firms and accountancy practices have signed up to the charter since its launch in 2016.

Signatories commit to supporting the progression of women into senior roles in the financial services sector by focusing on the executive pipeline and the mid-tier level; to set targets in line with this aim and to publicly report their progress in meeting those targets.

ICAEW’s targets

ICAEW is a supporter of gender diversity across all parts of the organisation, and we have progressed in gender diversity in many areas, including the senior leadership team. But are always striving to improve, which is why we became a signatory of the Women in Finance Charter.

In 2017 we committed to having 40% of our senior management team made up of women by March 2020. We exceeded this target in June 2019 and women now comprise 44% of our senior management team - compared to 33.3% on 5 April 201.

In 2021 we have gone through an organisational restructuring where 57.66% of the senior management team is female with 13.51% ethnic minority background.

We are pleased to have made progress but are not complacent. ICAEW continues to work towards better gender balance across all levels in the organisation especially those where one gender is particularly strong.

ICAEW’s work to support gender diversity

We support our female employees to progress and reach their full potential by providing leadership and development training and one to one coaching to address individual development needs. We ensure flexible working opportunities are open to all levels of staff within the organisation. We guarantee that there is always at least one woman (and one man) on all senior management interview panels. It is also our practice, where possible, to have gender balanced shortlists for senior positions within ICAEW. 

In 2006, we launched the Women in Finance Network to provide a venue for women across the sector to share their experiences and to support members with personal development. Each year ICAEW hosts events that bring the network together and showcases keynote speakers.

In 2011, we created the Women in Leadership training programme dedicated to support women aiming for senior management, partner or board roles. The programme has been designed to empower women to find a style of leadership that is already within them, and bring it powerfully to the fore, to help their organisation prosper.

Each year we are proud to award a place on this six-month course to the winner of the Future Leaders Award at the Women in the City Awards.