In this year’s Women in Treasury Global Study there are a number of new elements. Most significantly, for the first time we have opened up the study to participants of all genders to take part. This is in response to the importance of everyone’s views on gender in the workplace to be heard and for us to actively engage with allies.
Men have an important role to play in progress and we wanted to assess their insights and opinions alongside monitoring the lived experiences of women and non-binary people, as we assess gender from a new perspective. Over the course of the last two years the world has changed irrevocably, powered by human rights movements and by a pandemic which has drastically altered the way in which we live and work.
Flexible working has long been a central component in discussions around female representation and inclusion in the workplace. Access to parental leave at equal levels for both genders is another area of ongoing significance. Although many organisations that may have been previously resistant to flexible working have evolved their attitudes through necessity, that doesn’t necessarily translate to flexibility in the number of working hours expected from staff.
We have noticed when looking at the results of the study and anecdotally from our conversations with women over the past 18 months within our Women in Treasury platform, that the burden of domestic responsibilities tends to have fallen more heavily on female members of households. The pandemic has meant a different reality for different individuals that is just as dependent on their domestic situation as their professional one. In previous years of conversations around improvements to female representation and gender equality, we have spoken about the universe of the office and the boardroom as if it were entirely cut off from the universe of society and of our personal lives.
They also reflect the seismic shifts in society around broader issues of racial inequality that have been occurring over the past year. When we closed our Women in Treasury Global Study 2020, the ripple effects of the murder of George Floyd and the galvanisation of the Black Lives Matter movement had not yet fully resonated. In 2021 we are able to truly assess the impact that such movements have had on our respondents’ organisations and their commitments towards diversity, equity and inclusion across the board.
We hope you will find this year’s results enlightening. We believe this new approach offers a fully rounded and comprehensive look at the state of play regarding gender equality in corporations across the world.