Measurement area finding


This measurement area considers the fair representation of women across the workforce broadly and the systemic discrimination that women face.

Company performance averages at 25%, with 31 companies (87%) taking some action. When comparing value chain elements, companies are displaying stronger efforts in the supply chain (33% on average) than in the workplace (17%).

This measurement area includes the following eight indicators:

1. Gender equality in leadership

All companies, apart from Decathlon, report on the gender composition on their board of directors.

Five companies maintain a gender balance– between 40-60% women – on their board: Amazon, Gap, L Brands, LVMH, and Tailored Brands. LVMH is the only company that has a woman chairperson.

Among senior executives, all companies except for Decathlon report on the gender composition on their senior executives, with seven companies reporting a gender balance: Abercrombie & Fitch, The Foschini Group, H&M, Levi’s, Lojas Renner, Target, and Walmart.

Gap is the only company that has a chief executive officer and a chief financial officer that are both women, though three more companies (Abercrombie & Fitch, Fast Retailing, H&M) report having a woman chief executive officer, and two more companies (The Foschini Group and Souyute Group) report having a chief financial officer that is a woman.

More than half of the companies (21 companies, 60%) disclose information on the gender composition in senior management, with 11 companies reporting a gender balance: Associated British Foods (Primark), Carter’s, The Foschini Group, Gap, Levi’s, Lojas Renner, LVMH, Marks & Spencer, PVH, Ralph Lauren, and Target.

Similarly, 19 companies (54%) report on the gender composition in middle or other management positions, with seven companies revealing a gender balance: Adidas, Kering, Nike, PVH, Target, Under Armour, and VF Corporation.

12. Professional development and promotion

Twelve companies (34%) have at least three programmes to promote women in leadership positions. Eight companies track the number of women participating in at least one of these programmes, though only five companies do so annually: Associated British Foods (Primark), Decathlon, Kering, LVMH, and Nike.

Only six companies provide the breakdown by gender of the percentage of employees promoted: Adidas, Fast Retailing, Nike, Target, Under Armour, and VF Corporation.

13.  Occupational segregation

Ten companies (29%) provide a gender breakdown of their workforce by at least two occupational functions, though only five companies do so for more than three functions: Costco, Inditex, Kering, LVMH, and Target. Costco publishes the most detailed gender data of its workforce, including executives and senior officials, mid-level officials and managers, technicians, sales workers, administrative support, craft workers, operatives, laborers and services workers.

14.  Turnover and absenteeism

No companies disclose their absenteeism levels by gender.

Five companies (14%) track the annual turnover of employees by gender (Adidas, Inditex, Kering, PVH, and Under Armour), Inditex being the only company that does so annually.

15. Gender equality in leadership in the supply chain

Fifteen companies (43%) indicate that they support their suppliers in offering professional development opportunities to women workers, with 11 companies tracking the number of women participating in programmes.

Four companies (11%) collect data on the gender composition of workers and operators among suppliers: Adidas, H&M, Inditex, and VF Corporation.

16. Non-discrimination against pregnant and/or married women workers in the supply chain

Most companies (28 companies, 80%) require their suppliers to have strong statements or equal opportunities policies that do not allow for any discrimination against either pregnant or married women workers in the supply chain, with 11 companies specifically prohibit pregnancy testing. Eight companies (23%) provide further support to prevent discrimination.

Nike and Target are the only companies that require suppliers to provide training to their hiring managers to ensure a non-biased approach to the recruitment and promotion of married and pregnant women workers.

17. Enabling environment for freedom of association and collective bargaining

Many companies (23 companies, 66%) require their suppliers to prohibit intimidation, harassment, retaliation and violence against trade union members and representatives. Eleven companies (31%) support suppliers in establishing an enabling environment for workers to participate in trade unions and collective bargaining initiatives, though only nine companies (26%) provide or require their suppliers to provide training to workers to better understand these rights.

18. Gender responsive procurement

Eight companies (23%) have made a public commitment to gender-responsive procurement in their supply chain, while seven companies (20%) have actively supported women-owned businesses, for instance by providing trainings, partnership and mentoring programmes.

Only two companies (Associated British Foods (Primark) and Walmart) disclose that they procure from women-owned businesses, with Walmart being the only company that collects data on the total procurement spend that is directed to women-owned businesses.

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