Diversity in the workforce

GWA is committed to promoting diversity and inclusion through the implementation of targeted employment policies and initiatives to achieve a diverse workforce. The Board understands that significant benefits arise from increasing the pool of diverse talent across the business.

In 2012, the Board established a number of measurable objectives to promote and encourage increased diversity and in particular, to improve the representation of females within the workforce. The measurable objectives are assessed annually and are reported in the Corporate Governance Statement which is available on the Group’s website.

The objectives and supporting actions are:

Increase the percentage of females employed by GWA

  • Ensure the recruitment process and practices continue to comply with equal opportunity principles
  • Provide recruitment training for managers ensuring a focus on equal opportunity and avoiding ‘unconscious bias’

Provide and promote flexible work practices to attract and retain diverse talent

  • Continue to promote awareness of current flexible work practices available in the Group to existing employees and potential candidates
  • Investigate and implement any additional flexible work arrangements appropriate to the needs of employees with families

Succession planning and high potential employee development

  • Ensure a diverse group of high potential employees are identified as part of the Group’s succession planning process and actively developed for career progression

The aim of our recruitment and development strategy is to attract, develop and retain a diverse pool of talent to deliver our growth strategy.

The Group continues to review employment policies and practices to ensure that, among other things, flexibility is offered to attract and retain talent. GWA fully supports flexible working arrangements and many employees take advantage of this policy to work from home or to work flexible hours. A purchased leave plan is also in place which allows employees to “purchase” additional leave of up to four weeks per year via salary sacrifice.

The Group has regular talent reviews with a view to strengthen our succession plans. As outlined in the Group’s 2019 Workplace Gender Equality Report, the overall workforce consists of 39% female which is an increase of two percentage points from 2018 (2018: 37%). In addition, female representation across all levels of management has increased versus the prior year and 65% of all promotions were women.

During FY19, the gender diversity of the Board increased through the appointment of Alison Barrass as a non-executive director effective 24 May 2019.  This brings the total number of female directors to two (with Jane McKellar appointed during FY17), and female representation now comprises 25% of the Group’s directors.

The following table is a summary of the Group’s workplace profile at 31 March 2019:

Title % Female % Male
Board* 14% 86%
Key Management Personnel 29% 71%
Other Executive/General Managers 0% 100%
Senior Managers 43% 57%
Other Managers 34% 66%
Total – Management 35% 65%
Total – Non-Management 41% 59%
Overall Totals 39% 61%