WISE analysis of female representation on FTSE 100 Boards 2016 

In this year’s list, there are only 6 companies across the FTSE 100 with only one woman on the board and 60% of companies now have more than two women on the board of directors. Within the STEM sector the number of companies reaching this milestone has increased significantly since 2015 (Table 1). However, the STEM sector still lags behind the non-STEM sector where 65% of companies have hit this benchmark. 

There are now 61 companies who have met the voluntary target of 25% women on boards suggested by the Lord Davies report, 27 of these are STEM companies. During the closing of the Davies review, a new voluntary target of 33% was set to be achieved by 2020; in order to meet this target companies should be achieving 27% women on boards in 2016. Only 44 companies have achieved this target, and of these only 18 are STEM companies. 

The figures on executive directorships remain concerning for another year, of 268 executive directorships across the FTSE 100, only 26 are held by women (9.7%). The figures are more concerning within the STEM sector where there are only 7 female executive directors within 6 companies. 

The Cranfield 2016 Report ranks the same two STEM companies, Diageo and Unilever in its Top 10 with the highest percentages of women on their Boards. Diageo remained at the top of the rankings, with 45.5%, and Unilever rose from 8th to 4th place with 43% women (up from 35% in 2015). 

Further Insight 

The secondary analysis uses data from the Cranfield University School of Management Female FTSE 100 report 2016 (Dolder et al, 2016). The report ranks the FTSE 100 companies according to the percentage of Board directorships that are held by women.