Progress on Race Equity in senior leadership

Business is taking real action towards race equity in senior leadership

The data from Change the Race Ratio 2023 Progress report shows that its signatories are outpacing the targets set by the government backed Parker Review.

All FTSE350 signatories have hit the Parker targets of at least one ethnic minority board member compared to 70% of the total index.  At ExCo and ExCo minus one, 74% have already set targets and racial and ethnic minority representation, at this level, leapt by 25% within FTSE350 respondents.   

Change the Race Ratio launched in October 2020 by Lord Karan Bilimoria and with the support of the Parker Review, it comprises of over 110 businesses across a range of sectors from construction and logistics to life sciences and professional services. It is now chaired by Sir Trevor Phillips.

In September 2023, FTSE100 technology company Sage joined the campaign Steer-Co to work alongside businesses including Aviva, Brunswick, EY and Schroders who have held a leadership role since launch. The addition of Sage to the campaign leadership further strengthens Change the Race Ratio’s role in accelerating race equity in the FTSE350.

Other key findings from this year’s study were that;

  • Racial and ethnic minority representation at board level stands at an average of 14%
  • 74% of respondents have set racial and ethnic minority targets for exco and exco minus one, with targets ranging from 10 - 20%. These are to be achieved on average by 2025
  • Racial and ethnic minority representation at ExCo and ExCo minus one within FTSE350 respondents stands at an average of 10.2%, non FTSE350 9.1%
  • The number of respondents to set Black representation targets for exco and exco minus one has doubled compared to the 12 months prior
  • 8 out of 10 respondents are either currently reporting or plan to report their ethnicity pay gaps this year    

Sir Trevor Comments on the findings of the study
“I’m encouraged by the commitment and progress signatories are making despite the twin challenge of, tightening economic conditions and increasing ED&I fatigue. The progress achieved by this collective of the willing demonstrates what is possible and I commend their leadership” 

Peter de Norville VP ED&I at Sage PLC comments:
“As one of the 20% of FTSE 100 companies that have been voluntarily publishing their ethnicity pay gap for a few years now, Sage is aligned with Change the Race Ratio’s mission. We are pleased to see the collective progress reflected in this report and look forward to learning from our peers – both as we aim to increase representation from historically under-represented racial and ethnic groups in senior leadership, and in our broader efforts to build a culture of anti-racism at Sage.”

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