Kiwi leadership group releases largest workplace gender report

The workplace diversity survey looks to set a new benchmark for gender and ethnicity reporting in New Zealand.
By: | November 2, 2018


Champions for Change, a New Zealand group comprising senior leaders from across New Zealand industry, has released what it says is the country’s largest gender survey of its kind. 

The group brings together 56 leading senior leaders from New Zealand industry, “each with a personal mission to accelerate inclusive and diverse leadership” in their respective workplaces. They include CEOs and chairpersons from Air New Zealand, Spark, and NZ Police. 

The survey involved some 83,000 employees from  some of New Zealand’s largest employers, such as Deloitte, KPMG, EY, Saatchi & Saatchi, PwC , and ANZ, and looked to better understand what diversity looks like in these organisations.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, a key finding from the report was that women are not represented sufficiently in senior management roles. Although men and women are almost evenly split in the non-manager category, with women at 51% and men at 49%, the proportion of women decreases as one progresses up the career ladder:

Michele Embling, chair of PwC New Zealand and Champions for Change co-chair, said that the “purpose of the report is to set a new benchmark in gender and ethnicity reporting in New Zealand, from which these organisations can measure progress.”

“What is significant in this report, besides its enormous scope, is that each company reported voluntarily. That shows their real commitment to achieving greater diversity in their leadership teams,” said Embling.

Being able to measure and track gender and ethnicity will enable a greater level of accountability and transparency for progress to happen.

“Measurement has proven time and time again to be the first step in a process of transformation,” said David McLean, CEO of Westpac NZ and co-chair of Champions for Change.

The Champions group has aimed for a 40:40:20 balance at various levels of seniority, with about 40% of both women and men, and the 20% remainder open to either gender. They will continue to advocate for gender equality to help cultivate a diverse talent pool.