Today is International Women’s Day – an international day of recognition and celebration of the women among us and those who continue to pave the way for a gender balanced future.
In the UK, women represent just under half (46.5% in 2017) of the total workforce. The percentage of women in senior leadership roles has remained low over the years, and was at 22% in 2018*.At Guinness, we’re working hard to foster an environment that encourages diversity and inclusion. We have more women than the national average in senior leadership positions, with 31% of our senior roles held by women. Women also make up 20.7% of our trades apprentices this year – contributing towards our aim of 5% of our trades workforce to be women by 2021.
We also continue to work hard to support and encourage women to take up skilled trades and leadership roles across housing maintenance through our ‘Women In Maintenance’ initiative.
During 2019/20 we are running a Kickstart programme for tradeswomen only, which will source candidates from our customers and communities. The four week course gives a practical insight into the industry, and encourages graduates to consider applying for trades apprenticeships as a next step.
We are also delighted to launch our Tradeswomen Ambassador training programme today, which is open to tradeswomen throughout the industry who want to be advocates for the Women In Maintenance initiative. The two-day course will include practical learning such as presentation skills, time management and planning, as well as networking opportunities, and coaching and mentoring.
A great professional development opportunity, our Tradeswoman Ambassadors blaze a trail for others by undertaking outreach work at colleges, conferences and industry events, influencing key players in the industry and advising on how to tackle any barriers faced by women coming into maintenance roles.
While there’s still more we can do to inspire and support more women into leadership roles and maintenance careers, this International Women’s Day we’re proud to say we are working hard to tip the balance in the right direction at Guinness.